Ministry of Finance
The Ministry of Finance is located in the city centre of Vienna (Johannesgasse 5) and houses all Directorates General except DG Information and Communication Technology, e-government which is located in Hintere Zollamtsstraße 2b.
In organisational terms, the Secretariat General is directly answerable to the Federal Minister of Finance and coordinates the work of the Directorates General.
Secretary General Hans-Georg Kramer
The central role of the Secretary General is global handling of all transactions belonging to the sphere of operations of the Federal Ministry of Finance. This includes, in particular, strategic planning and controlling tasks, human resources, internal audit and administrative development of the Ministry. The internal audit department is directly answerable to the Secretary General.
Range of activities
- Preparation of decisions on principle
- Coordination of budgetary, economic and tax policy
- Consent to applications for tax relief in consultation with the competent head of the Directorate General in question and setting the related approval limits within central management
DG Corporate Operations and Services
The Directorate General for Corporate Operations and Services is a strategic adviser and service provider for the entire Ministry and shapes the transformation process of organisational culture.
Director General Gerhard Zotter
- from maintaining the existing order to accompanying transformation processes
- from creating dependencies to enabling independence
- from administrating and controlling to initiating and advising
Range of activities
- Coordination of human resource management
- Corporate procurement, office space management and real estate
- Facility management
- Preparation of tendering procedures and award of contracts
- Improvement of office organisation and simplification of administration
- Coordination with Parliament, Council of Ministers and Court of Audit
- Public sector holdings and real estate
- Tasks relating to the federal budget law and preparation of the draft federal budget for the Ministry of Finance
DG Budget and Public Finances
The Directorate General for Budget and Public Finances assumes overall responsibility for the Austrian federal budget and its goal is to achieve sustained consolidation of public finances.
Director General Manfred Lödl
The core competence of the Federal Ministry of Finance is its overall responsibility for the Austrian federal budget. At an administrative level this responsibility is assumed by the Directorate General for Budget and Public Finances. Its task is to ensure that public funds for the fulfilment of public functions and the provision of public services are used in an efficient, economic and effective manner by applying the principles of budget management, namely transparency, efficiency as well as true and fair view. The Directorate General for Budget and Public Finances draws up and executes the federal budget and is responsible for the financial relations of the federal state with its political subdivisions, social security institutions and the EU.
- long-term and sustained consolidation of public finances
- safeguarding "value for money" by structural reforms in areas of budgetary relevance
Range of activities
- Preparation and execution of the federal budget
- Shaping domestic financial relations and co-ordinating the budgetary policies of the Federal State, the provinces and the municipalities
- Representation of Austrian interests with regard to the EU budgetary policy and responsibility for financial flows between the EU budget and the Austrian federal budget
- Support in developing and introducing structural reforms and New Public Management tools in the area of federal administration
DG Economic Policy and Financial Markets
"The Directorate General for Economic Policy and Financial Markets deals with economic and financial policy at the domestic and international level. In times of crisis in particular, it plays a key role in handling upcoming problems."
Director General Harald Waiglein
The DG Economic Policy and Financial Markets deals with economic and financial policy at the Austrian, European and global level and plays a leading role in the preparation of supervisory and financial market legislation. Economic policy instruments are developed based on Austrian interests, and take into account domestic and international debate.
- Acting as a centre of competence for economic and financial market policy to develop analytical strategies and optimally implement them based on overall economic considerations
- Optimally introducing Austrian economic and financial market policy interests into the international debate and playing an active role in policy development
- Creating an optimal framework for Austrian financial and capital markets
Range of activities
- Preparing economic policy foundations and analyses (macroeconomic policy, structural policy)
- Coordinating Ministry of Finance positions on issues of European integration, EU expansion and trade policy
- Managing Austria's shareholdings in international financial institutions (IFI)
- Establishing initiatives in the Austrian financial market
- Financial Market Committee, a joint platform of the Austrian Financial Market Authority (FMA), Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian central bank – OeNB) and Austrian Ministry of Finance
- Introducing Austria's interests into the international debate, in particular in the areas of banking, capital market and insurance law, and the transfer of EU law into national law
- Ensuring conformity of national law with EU law in the areas of banking and capital market law
- Accepting state responsibility, and state responsibility policy of the Austrian federal government
- Defining criteria and standards for the acceptance of state responsibility
- Administering the hallmarking system
- Strategic orientation of export promotion and export financing
- Accepting export liability in close cooperation with the Oesterreichische Kontrollbank (OeKB)
DG Tax and Customs Administration; Anti-fraud Measures; Customs
The Directorate General for Customs and International as well as Organisational Tax Issues is responsible for ensuring appropriate tax revenues - using a new organisational model - modern, customer-oriented and efficient.
Director General Hans-Georg Kramer
The Directorate General has a broad range of responsibilities. These include matters relating to taxes and duties, as well as acting as a representative in international organisations. Its main responsibility is ensuring appropriate tax revenues and the legislative transposition of tax law.
- Tax measures for compliance with government programme requirements and European standards, such as the Stability and Growth Pact and the Lisbon and Barcelona objectives
- Reforming the tax administration to increase customer-orientation and services
Range of activities
- Matters concerning tax policy and tax collection
- Organisation of lower level tax and duty offices
- Legislative matters concerning tax law
- Customs duties and consumption taxes
- Customs procedures and customs law
- Prohibitions and restrictions
- Matters concerning the origin of goods and tariff preferences for non-EU countries
- Fiscal offences law
- Intergovernmental tax law
- Tax harmonisation within the European Union
- Tax ombudsman office
- Assistance for nationwide economic regions and functional areas
- Performing international responsibilities in the European Union and international organisations
DG Information & Communication Technology, e-government
The Directorate General for Information & Communication Technology, e-government isthe central interface between the specialist divisions and the IT service providers on our way to electronic government.
Director General Gerhard Popp
The development and implementation of tailor-made and ground-breaking IT applications is the primary task of the Directorate General. It enables the Ministry of Finance to offer innovative communication and IT solutions to citizens, enterprises as well as to its own employees. The Directorate is also responsible for developing technologies useful for all administrations, for example for the federal government's personnel management. The overall goal is to save administrative and operational costs by using the same tools for all ministries and other bodies of administration.
The Ministry of Finance is on the cutting edge of e-government which is acknowledged by numerous international prizes. "FinanzOnline" is probably one of the most innovative tools all across Europe. The Ministry of Finance was able to cut the administration costs by 260 million euros since its start in 2003.
Furthermore the Directorate is responsible for carrying out the federal government's payment transactions. In addition the Ministry of Finance enjoys an excellent reputation for developing international standards.
Beyond that the Directorate is in charge of the Ministry of Finance's internal and external communication tasks. Sustainable and targeted communication leads to more transparency and provides interested citizens and the economy with information on financial questions, taxes and custom duties.
- Becoming one of the most innovative public financial administrations in the European Union by the use of e-government solutions
- Cost cuts and simplification of processes
- Achieving synergy effects by using the same technologies for all bodies of administration
- Integrated communication approach
Range of activities
- Strategic matters concerning information technology
- Organization of IT solutions for the Ministry of Finance as well as for the federal government's budget and personnel issues
- IT infrastructure of the Ministry of Finance
- Organization of the federal government's accounting systems and treasury matters
- e-government for the Ministry of Finance
- European integration in the field of IT
- IT support for numerous Austrian bodies of administration
DG Tax Policy and Tax Law
Directorate General VI deals with all areas of tax policy and tax law. It prepares strategic legislative measures at the national and international level and creates a basis for uniform implementation nationwide.
Director General Gunter Mayr
Tax law at the highest functional level is especially important during times of increasing internationalisation and competition, and during the economic and financial crisis.
Directorate General VI has a broad range of responsibilities that include, for example:
- Tax policy
- Tax revenue estimation
- Income tax and corporation tax
- Payroll tax
- Value-added tax
- EU tax harmonisation
- International tax law
- Property tax and real estate transfer tax
- Capital transaction tax
- Stamp duties and legal transaction fees
- Insurance tax (incl. motor vehicle-related insurance tax) and motor vehicle tax
- Consumption taxes, tobacco monopoly
- The NoVA (Normverbrachsabgabe) motor vehicle tax
- Energy taxes and energy tax refunds
Directorate General VI consists of two groups (Tax Policy and Substantive Tax Law) with a total of nine departments.
- Concepts for a stable, sustainable, fair and equitable tax system
- Ensure the tax system is efficient and implemented uniformly using directives and decrees
- Secure Austria's position as a location for business and maintain its competitive international tax position
- Exchange technical information internationally on tax policy developments in other countries
- Improve ethical tax behaviour to ensure appropriate tax revenues
Range of activities
- Preparing a list of possible tax reform measures
- Preparing detailed tax policy concepts
- Analysing measures with respect to budgetary and economic effects
- Preparing laws and regulations in all areas of substantive tax law
- Preparing information specifically for citizens
- Exchanging information on experience with substantive tax law in other taxation systems
- Concluding double taxation agreements
- Representing Austria in international bodies