The Minister of Justice Kalle Laanet replied to the interpellation concerning the raising of VAT (No. 284), submitted by Member of the Riigikogu Riina Solman. In her interpellation, the Member of the Riigikogu wished to know why it was intended to raise VAT which would significantly worsen the Estonian business and tax environment.
The Minister of Justice replied that VAT was a general consumption tax for gaining state budget revenue. “The most important thing is to understand in what security environment we are living today and one important goal when raising VAT by two percentage points is definitely thereby also to raise national defence spending, which will amount to the order of 1.3 billion euro in 2024,” he explained.
When referring to national defence spending, Laanet pointed out that the situation in Ukraine and the security situation across our borders had not changed in any way. “We here in Estonia are facing an exactly similar threat of Russia attacking Estonia as well at some point. It has not disappeared anywhere. So, consequently, it is definitely our duty together with all taxpayers to increase the capacity of our national defence,” the Minister of Justice added.
As another reason, the minister pointed out that, since the state budget was out of balance, one of the aims of the relevant amendment was also to move towards balance through increasing state revenue. “The third additional purpose might be to reduce VAT derogations to make the tax system more efficient and to treat taxpayers more equally,” he said in conclusion.
The Minister of Justice Kalle Laanet also replied to the interpellation concerning gender neutrality (No. 302).
The Minister of Culture Heidy Purga replied to the interpellation concerning transparency of the legislative process (No. 151).
At the request of the initiators, the interpellations concerning deceitful policy (No. 80, No. 86), the establishment of a car tax (No. 249, No. 359, No. 364) and transparency of the legislative process (No. 282) were excluded from the agenda for today’s sitting.
The initiators withdrew the interpellations concerning the impact of the green transition in the area of administration of the Ministry of Culture (No. 135) and the rise in VAT (No. 233, No. 236) and the integral impact of the tax package (No. 143).
The sitting ended at 4.44 p.m.
Video recording will be available to watch later on the Riigikogu YouTube channel.
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