Greece is about to introduce a measure to regulate short-term leasing of properties, effectively imposing a tax on Airbnb contracts.

According to an announcement by the country’s Independent Public Revenue Authority (a body appointed by the Hellenic Parliament, not the government), a stamp duty is going to apply on short-term leasing via electronic platforms.

The Authority introduced this reform as a way to tackle the “Airbnb effect” on the Greek economy. Last year, the Greek Tax Office presented a strict framework regarding income from short-term property leasings, one of the few booming industries in the crisis-stricken country.

Leasing apartments and houses through online platforms such as Airbnb has offered an opportunity to many Greeks to have an income, given that the country attracts large numbers of tourists annually.

The practice has led to the accumulation of an income that has been difficult to tax so far, and has also caused other problems, most notably resulting to a shortage of property for long-term leasing, but also threatening the hotel industry.

Introducing a three per cent stamp duty is believed to resolve one of these issues, tackling tax evasion and bringing more revenue to the state coffers.