Greeks count cost of VAT hike

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Greeks count cost of VAT hike

Greeks count cost of VAT hike
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Prices are on the rise again in Greece.

The latest tax hike on consumer goods and services has came into effect on Thursday.

The increase, which is the second since March, is part of government efforts to boost state revenues for Greece’s ravaged economy.

VAT is rising from 21 to 23 percent. Food taxes went up from 10 to 11 percent.

The head of the main Athens Varvakeios meat market, Kleanthis Tsironis, said: “This is yet another increase, with the previous increases we didn’t put up the price of our meat and this time we’ll also absorb the cost of the VAT rise.”

Other businesses said they did not have the resources to do that.

Among shoppers, people on fixed incomes, like pensioner Georgia Kalatzi, complained they will suffer most: “Of course this is going to affect us, because every time VAT goes up, all the prices go up and no one shops.”

Cab fares are also being taxed at a higher rate which drivers said will cost them customers.

One Athens driver said: “People are hesitant to use taxis, and now with the rise in VAT, they’ll think twice before taking a taxi.”

The cabbies are also angry about extra paperwork from issuing receipts part of a crackdown on widespread tax evasion.

Athens is pressing ahead with the austerity measures despite strikes and protests by unions.