THE DELAY in publishing legislation passed by MPs to abolish Property Transfer Fees or reduce them by 50% for a period of six months is paralysing the Island’s already damaged housing market according to The Cyprus Land and Building Developers Association.
On 3rd November, MPs voted unanimously to abolish Property Transfer Fees on sales where VAT was payable and also to halve them on sales where no VAT was payable; these changes would be effective for six months.
But President Christofias objected to the proposals and rejected them asking the MPs to think again.
MPs immediately took on board the President’s objections and amended their proposals. Then, on 17th November, a majority of them voted through a revised set of legislative changes.
However, the revised legislation has yet to be published in the Government’s official newspaper; the Cyprus Government Gazette, which means that it has yet to come into force.
You don’t have to be a genius to appreciate the consequence of all this dithering and to-ing and fro-ing between the MPs and the President:
Even those few buyers who are ready to sign contracts to buy property are delaying matters in the hope that they will benefit from the proposed abolition/reduction in Property Transfer Fees – and as a result very few property transactions are taking place; the housing market has become paralysed.
The Cyprus Land and Building Developers Association has urged the President to sign-off the revised legislation and hopes that he does not have any new thoughts or objections for MPs to consider.
(Property sales figures for November should be published in ten days or so when we shall have a clear picture of how much damage this dithering has caused).