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2004-08-24

The haze surrounding the new economic program of SPÖ 

..is starting to dissolve slowly, but the question is whether what will emerge beneath will be something solid or just another, intentional haze for as long as the Austrian socialdemocrats remain in opposition. Party spokesman Darabos and budget spokesman Matznetter have given an interview [DE] to the Kurier newspaper (see also rather substantial discussion [DE] in the forum there. Wow, I didn't know that the Kurier online reader forums are at least equal to the ones at Standard.)

Less taxation of small salaries, also on the employer side, more taxation of capitals, more reliance on tax income to fund pensions and social insurance. Also, vague hints at a basic income system. The SPÖ website offers a preview in rosy colors [DE] of the tax proposals of the party. The new economic program is scheduled for release in mid September.

Most of the alluded cornerstones of the program can be either positive or negative depending on the details and on implementation. Unfortunately, in addition the party still trumpets its pet idea of European tax harmonisation "to prevent tax dumping", which I still find highly problematic.


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