The ANO party which is trying to form a coalition government with the Social Democrats, with tacit support from the Communist Party, is preparing changes to the law on electronic cash registers introduced at the start of 2017 as a means of fighting tax-evasion. The third and fourth phase of the project, due to have come into force this year, had to be postponed after the Constitutional Court voiced reservations to some of the measures involved.
After several months of negotiations, ANO and the Social Democrats are reported to have reached agreement on changes to the law on electronic cash registers, which will modify its impact and take into consideration the reservations voiced by the Constitutional Court.
The Social Democrats, who long opposed any exemptions and modifications on the argument that the law had been introduced to create equal conditions for all, have nodded to a proposal that would provide an easier monitoring system for thousands of small entrepreneurs who have yet to join the system and who have been complaining that the need to register all business transactions online is costly, time consuming and could put them out of business.
Under the proposed amendment, small entrepreneurs with an annual turnover less than 200 thousand crowns, fewer than a thousand business transactions a year and a single employee at the most, would be exempted from registering transactions daily online. They would, instead, be required to fill in a form registering all transactions which would be sent to the financial authorities at the end of every month.
The proposed amendment would open the door to the third and fourth phase of the project when an estimated 300 thousand entrepreneurs – among them farmers, lawyers and doctors would be required to join the system. The first and second phase affected restaurant owners, hoteliers and salespeople.
Associations of small and medium sized entrepreneurs are already protesting against the amendment, on the grounds that it merely replaces one set of extra duties with another. Together with right-wing law makers they argue that the government should cancel the legislation as a whole.
However Prime Minister Andrej Babiš is determined to see it through arguing that it has already proved its worth and improved tax collection is filling state coffers.