Bulgaria MPs Impose Hefty Fines on Cigarette Sales Violators
The Members of the Bulgarian Parliament decided Friday to impose hefty fines on cigarette merchants not registered to pay VAT.
The move involves businesses that have a turnover of more than BGN 50 000, are not Value Added Tax (VAT) registered, but store, offer and sell cigarettes.
The fine is set at BGN 15 000 to 50 000, in addition to property sanctions of BGN 50 000 to 100 000 and revocation of the sales license for one year.
Repeat violators face respectively fines of BGN 50 000 to 100 000, property sanctions of BGN 100 000 to 150 000 and 3-year license revocation.
The opposition left-wing declared they are against the move saying it is not based on reality, pointing out it would hurt small village stores, which will not be able to register for VAT.
The MP from the ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) party, Menda Stoyanova, countered the measure involves only those who violate the law, adding that from 28 000 facilities in Bulgaria selling tobacco products only 65 have VAT registration.