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Tax debate gets ugly

Disy leader Averof Neophytou dropped a bombshell on Monday when he suggested the state could do away completely with imposing property taxes, only to find strong opposition in his way.

Neophytou argued that a new system of collecting taxes elsewhere could pave the way for no property taxes whatsoever for Cypriot citizens and permanent residents.

But opposition Akel MP Eleni Mavrou argued the move was just a ploy to help rich people avoid having to pay taxes, adding that property taxes should be based on income brackets and neither a flat rate or none at all.

Other voices from the opposition criticised the way the government exercises what is described as fiscal discipline, with an angry Finance Minister Harris Georgiades firing back.

Georgiades said some people are shooting blanks, referring to those who call for cutting taxes while refusing to cut spending.

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