Financial difficulties in Greece have contributed to a rise in tax evasion, with many consumers opting to spend cash as they look for discounts, without receiving receipts in return. Treasury officials have therefore been keen to incentivise the use of debit and credit cards, and have come up with the idea of a ‘receipt’ lottery.
Shoppers who pay for their purchases with cards will have their receipts entered into a draw, and every month there will be €1 million shared out randomly amongst lucky winners. The prizes will be automatically paid out to the winners’ bank accounts, although anyone who owes outstanding taxes will have the difference deducted.
The government in Athens hopes that the new lottery will make it easier to follow money trails around the country. It comes after 200,000 small and medium business across Greece were compelled to install debit card terminals.
Greece’s plan to launch a lottery based on receipts follows a similar idea in Italy. The Italian ‘tax lottery’ was proposed last year and was expected to be piloted in 2017, but a report in the Corriere della Sera newspaper this week suggested it may not now be rolled out until next year.