On Monday 20 February, I had the pleasure of accompanying Ann Stalley, Head of Outsourcing, and Mike Stalley, FiscalReps Chief Executive, on a short business trip to Greece to meet with our network associates there. It was cut even shorter after technical problems with our plane lead to an 11 hour delay!
On Tuesday we met with our associates at Comergon S.A. Risk Managers & Insurance Brokers, headed up by CEO George Zafiriou. It was good to see George again; if you attended FiscalReps annual November Forum in 2010 you would have heard George speak with great authority about the difficulties of registration, and balancing the tightrope of audit bureaucracy in Greece. It was also great to meet Stavros Spyratos, CFO and Sofia Stourioti, the Accounting Manager.
It was a great opportunity for me to work with Sofia face to face, and get a clearer picture of the registration procedure. For example, Sofia must go to the tax authority with any queries she has, as they will not answer their telephones, but cannot dismiss her so easily in person. I am thankful too, that she is the one with the task of completing the numerous registration forms in the Greek language!
We learned that the Greek Tax Authorities have passed an Amnesty for TEAAPAE (Greek Pension Fund), which will end on March 31st 2012. It is rumoured that this could well be the last amnesty of its kind as the Greek government are under pressure to close such loopholes, and prepare to enforce penalties for late payment of taxes. This is certainly understandable, given the current economic climate in Greece, as it could well be a great source of revenue. We have also learned that there are currently no plans for another IPT Amnesty. Keep an eye on our blogs, twitter pages and mailers as we will provide more information should this change.
Travel delays aside, our trip was a great success, and we look forward to many more years of good relationships with George, and all the team at Comergon.