Spanish soccer star Garcia ‘glad to pay more tax to help out’


Athletic Bilbao forward Raul Garcia agrees with the Spanish government’s plan to impose a temporary tax on the richest people in the country.

Budget minister Maria Jesus Montero announced in September that some of those in the wealthiest minority of the population would be taxed more during the next two years, because of rampant inflation caused by fallout from Russia’s war in Ukraine.

“Obviously we live in a comfortable financial situation, but it does not isolate me from the situations that my friends, my family are living in,” Garcia told Spanish newspaper El Pais.

“I understand that life is not the same thing I am living. That’s why I think we have to be supportive.”

Various players in Spain over the past decade have been punished for tax fraud offences, including former Real Madrid and Barcelona players, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

The Socialist-led coalition government’s new asset tax, described as a “solidarity” tax, will see those who have holdings worth over three million euros (2.96 million dollars) subject to extra payments from 1.7 percent rising to 3.5 percent, depending on the size of their fortune.

“There are people who are unemployed, who aren’t making it to the end of the month, who don’t have money for food, I see it among my friends,” added the 36-year-old veteran.

“Suddenly a mortgage is drowning you, with both people at home working. Or if you have to plan whether to have a child or not for financial reasons.

“I understand that if they are charging me some taxes… charging, no, collecting, so that everyone can benefit, I understand it and I also want it to be that way.”

“I’m glad to have my taxes raised, if they go where I think they should go, because I don’t think all that should be done is being done.”

Athletic, who have started the season well and are currently sixth in La Liga face Barcelona on Sunday at Camp Nou.

rbs/bsp



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