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Govt calls off plans to levy tax on boats, motorcycles

Govt calls off plans to levy tax on boats, motorcycles

HELSINKI: The Finns Party is delighted that its proposal to abandon the tax on motorcycles was successful, says Sampo Terho, the chairperson of the Finns Party Parliamentary Group. The Finnish Government has called off its plan to levy a tax on motorcycles and pleasure boats.

Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) announced yesterday that the revenues generated by the taxes will, according to the latest calculations, fall short of initial estimates and that the preparatory work has been suspended at the request of Minister for Foreign Affairs Timo Soini (PS).

The proposed tax revisions had come under notable criticism even from some members of the ruling parties due what were believed to be optimistic revenue estimates.

The Finns Party has expressed its “delight” with the decision to abandon the proposed tax on motorcycles.

“We are delighted that our proposal to abandon the tax on motorcycles was successful. We did not propose the motorcycle tax, but we fended it off,” Sampo Terho, the chairperson of the Finns Party Parliamentary Group, stated in a press release on Wednesday.

The Finns Party was reportedly in favour of continuing the preparatory work on the tax on pleasure boats, but the other two ruling parties – the Centre and the National Coalition – were adamant that the two taxes were parts of the same package.

Terho explains that calling off the motorcycle tax was a more important objective for the party than introducing the pleasure boat tax.

Soini had been a particularly vocal advocate of the tax on pleasure boats. He proclaimed in a press conference six months ago that the Finns Party has succeeded in introducing a tax on pleasure boats and “yuppie scooters” – a term he coined and later said refers to water scooters.

Terho admitted yesterday that calling off also the pleasure boat tax was justifiable because “several calculations indicated” that the tax would not have replenished state coffers to the extent that was initially estimated.

The Ministry of Finance began circulating its draft tax bills for comments in December.