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This newsletter intends to inform You on the last amendments related to tax and duties, after the approval of the Fiscal Package 2015 by the Parliament, on the 27 November 2014.

The 2015 Fiscal Package will enter into force on the 1st of January 2015.

We inform you that the most relevant amendments related to your business activity in Albania are divided as below:

I. regarding the Income Tax:

The new law no. 156/2014 “On Some Changes to

Law no. 8438/1998 “On Income Tax” introduces the following amendments:

The following categories shall be exempted from the Income Tax:

1) contributions made by the employer or any other contributing person in relation to the voluntary pension fund;

2) Return of Investment, including incomes from capitals from investments carried out with the assets of the pension fund.

Therefore, the contributions paid by employers on behalf of employees are considered as deductable expenses for the income tax to the extent as provided by law no.10197/2009 on voluntary pension.

  • Increase of the income tax % from 10% to 15% for:
    • Dividends, incomes from shareholder/partner income, interests on loans, deposits or similar contracts;
    • Transfer of property rights on immovable properties.
  • Increase of Whithholding Tax % from 10% to 15 %.
  • The following are not considered as deductable expenses for individuals:
    • Voluntary contributions for pension, life or healthcare paid by the individual himself.
    • Building tax.
  • The Voluntary Pension fund is exempted from the income tax.
  • Regarding the depreciation, the following shall be considered as fullydeductible expense of the tax period:
    • Buildings, constructions and machineries in case the remaining value of the assets at the beginning of the tax period is lower than 3% of the historical cost of the said asset.
  • The other assets, if the remaining value of at the beginning of the tax period is lower than 10% of the historical cost of the said assets.

Until April 2015. The CM shall be in charge of issuing a regulation setting the rules for expected losses, losses, damages and waste during production, warehouse and transport for tax purposes.

II. Regarding National Taxes:

Law no. 157/2014 introduces, inter alia, the following amendments to the law no. 9975, dated 28.07.2008 “On National Taxes”:

  • The circulation tax on gasoline and gasoil is increased from Leke 17/liter to Leke 27/liter for gasoline and gasoil.
  • Percentage of mineral royalties for the metallic mineral content in the mineral product is 2/3 of the royalties rate set based on the Appendix of the first group (metallic minerals).

Local government is granted 5% of the mineral royalties’ incomes.

A new tax is imposed on insurance premiums, at the rate of 3% of the premium amount. The said tax is not applicable on life insurance premiums, travel health and green card insuranceproducts.

Fishing boats are exempted from the payment fo the circulation tax and carbon tax.

III. Regarding Excises:

Law no.158/2014, “On amendments to law no.61/2012 “On Excise in the Republic of Albania”, as amended” introduces the following amendments:

Amendment to the Appendix setting the tax level.

Addition as taxable good of energy drinks which shall be taxed 30 lekë/liter.

IV. RegardingCustomTariffs:

Upon law no. 159/2014 “On Some Changes to Law no. 9981, dated 08.09.2008 “On Approval of Customs Tariffs Levels” the following was amended:

  • Makes 0 the custom tariff for items with the following nomenclature code: 2709 00 90; 0511 10 00; 1001 99 00; 1101 00 11; 1101 00 15; 0103 91 10 100; 0102 29 29 100; 0102 29 29 200; 2309 90 31; 0407 11 00; 0407 19 11; 0407 19 19; 0105 11 11; 0105 11 19.
  • The custom tariff for new pneumatic tires of rubber is reduced from 15% to 10%.

Lately on December 4, 2014, was approved law no. 164/2014 “on several amendmentsand additions to law no. 9920, date 19.05.2008 “On the tax procedures in the Republic of Albania” as amended””, which brought amendments in the tax procedures relevant to your business activity as follows:

  • The Tax Appeal Directorate shall issue its decision within 60 days (instead of 90 days) from the submission of a tax appeal.
  • The bank guarantee issued to secure payment of the tax obligations in course of an appeal process should have a minimum validity period of 6 months, but in any case not less than the time period until the decision shall become final/enforceable.
  • Introduction of a statute of limitation related to the right of the taxpayer to request the reimbursement of the taxes paid in excess. The taxpayer’s right to request a tax reimbursement expires 5 years after the respective tax return is filed.
  • The penalty for late payment of tax obligations is fixed at the rate of 0.06 percent of the unpaid tax obligation for each day of delay applicable for a limited period of 365 days (instead of 5% every month or part of a month but not more than 25% of the tax obligation).
  • The penalty for incorrect tax declaration is fixed at the rate of 0.06 percent of the undeclared tax obligation for each day of delay until payment is performed, not exceeding however a period of 365 days (instead of 5% every month or part of themonth but not more than 25% of the tax obligation). The same penalty shall also be applicable in case of reduction of a tax credit.
  • Tax related court decisions are to be published in the General Tax Directorate website.
  • A taxpayer that is in the passive status/register may not perform any commercial activity; otherwise a penalty applies.