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Published: 28 november 2012 10:53

Lithuania’s traders promise declining prices to match cuts in VAT rate

Daržovės
„Reuters“/„Scanpix“ nuotr. / Daržovės

Lithuania’s traders are ready to lower the prices of meat and poultry by the rate matching the cut in the value-added tax (VAT) levied on the products, the Verslo Žinios business daily reports.

Laurynas Vilimas, the executive director of the Lithuanian Trade Enterprises Association, told the daily that with the VAT rate cut to 9 percent, the traders, in their turn, could lower the prices of products by the same margin.

“Lithuania’s industry suffers if Lithuanians buy Polish meat in shops and it suffers a double blow if Lithuanians buy unaccounted Polish meat at marketplaces or elsewhere. Only one solution is possible in both cases – to eliminate economic benefits of buying the product of non-Lithuanian origin outside shops, that is, to lower the price,” Vilimas said.

The association estimates that with the VAT levied on meat hiked to 21 percent, from 5 percent, in 2009, the budget generated extra 150 million litas (EUR 43.48m) over three years. However, it also lost more than 100 million litas due to a decline in the consumption of meat products.

Lithuania's new government is considering a possibility to introduce reduced VAT rates for fresh meat and hotels from 2013.

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