RIGA, April 11 (Xinhua) -- Latvian authorities are considering charging capital gains tax on crypto currency transactions, a Finance Ministry official said on Latvian public radio Wednesday.
Astra Kalane, director of the Finance Ministry's Department of Direct Taxes, said the rate of capital gains tax is currently 20 percent. Essentially, crypto currency transactions are very similar to capital gains which is why the Finance Ministry wants to charge this tax on such deals, the official said.
The plan, however, would require amending Latvian taxation laws to regulate the application of this tax.
A possible regulation for crypto currencies was also discussed in the Latvian parliament on Wednesday, as representatives of the national financial regulator, the Financial and Capital Market Commission (FCMC), reported to the parliament budget and finance (taxation) committee on the situation with crypto currencies in Latvia.
They underlined that transactions and investments in crypto currencies are considered extremely risky. At present, crypto currencies are not recognized as legal tender in Latvia, but they still can function as trading tools.
Finance intelligence experts indicated that a special regulation on crypto currencies is needed also in Latvian penal and anti-terrorism legislation.
The Latvian government has set up a workgroup which is expected to come up by July with legislative proposals on how to regulate the use of crypto currencies.
Janis Vucans, an MP of the ruling centrist Greens and Farmers Union, noted that the Latvian state has so far taken no responsibility for people using crypto currencies.