May 17th, 2012

Telcos propose lower cap for tax on telephone calls, messages

Hungary’s three biggest telcos, Magyar Telekom, Telenor and Vodafone, proposed modifications to a government bill for a tax on telephone calls and text messages in a joint statement on Monday.

According to the modifications they propose, the monthly tax could be capped at HUF 400 for individuals’ accounts and at HUF 1,400 for company accounts instead of HUF 700 and HUF 2,500, respectively, as proposed by the government, and the tax could still bring in the amount expected by the government, the three companies said.

They also expressed their common conviction that the new tax would not serve Hungary’s interests while it puts unfair burden on the telecommunications services.

Crisis taxes introduced in 2010 were levied on all providers of telecommunications services, therefore the new tax – which they also termed a crisis tax – should also be levied on all of them, including broadcasting services, the three companies argued.

The HUF 2-per-minute tax on telephone calls and text messages, payable by service providers, will be introduced on July 1, if approved by Parliament.

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