Business representatives are objecting to the latest hike in the retirement and healthcare taxes, which will increase the tax on salaries by 0.5 percent, or a full percent for the entire 2018.

Macedonian employees have to pay a relatively low 10 percent income tax, but there is an 18.8 percent tax on the gross salary to support the public retirement fund and an additional 7.5 percent tax for the public healthcare system. Several lesser fees add to a whopping tax hit of nearly 40 percent on the gross salary, which keeps going up after several attempts to have it reduced under the previous, conservative, pro-business VMRO-DPMNE led Government.

The state is trying to plug its budgetary holes but hsa no strategy or vision, it is just coming up with imrpovised short term solutions that hit the business sector, said Blagoja Grozdanov, from the Chamber of Accountants, as companies are asked to extract more money from their pay slips at the start of the next year.

Dragan Mitkovski, who leads the Chamber, adds that the Chambers of Commerce have joinly asked the Government to look into reducing the load. The insists that this, and other tax hikes introduced by the socialist SDSM led Government have only pushed the citizens to find innovative ways of avoiding taxes.

Go to a used car lot, all the sale contracts are signed at 500 EUR, which is the new limit up to which you can make a cash transaction. The remainder of the price is paid in cash, and is untaxed, Mitkovski warns.