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Poland: Taxation of retail sector held not state aid

Poland: Taxation of retail sector held not state aid

The General Court of the European Union issued a judgment finding that the European Commission incorrectly classified the Polish tax on the retail sector as illegal state aid.

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The General Court annulled the EC’s decision about the Polish tax. The case is: Poland v. Commission, T-836/16 and T-624/17 (16 May 2019)


As noted in a release [PDF 172 KB] from the General Court, the tax of the retail sector in Poland (effective in 2016) imposed a tax on all retailers regardless of their legal status. The tax was based on the turnover of the companies concerned and was progressive in nature.

  • The basis of assessment was a monthly turnover of more than 17 million Polish zloty (PLN) (approximately €4 million).
  • The tax rates applied to such a monthly turnover were 0.8% from PLN 17 million to 170 million inclusive and 1.4% beyond PLN 170 million.

The EC initiated a procedure concerning this tax and eventually concluded that the tax was state aid. The Polish government had suspended application of the tax pursuant to a request of the EC.

The General Court, however, determined that the EC incorrectly classified the tax as state aid.

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