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Israeli Olympic medalists will not have to pay taxes on their awards

CM 29/08/2021

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Athletes winning medals in the Olympics or Paralympics will not have to pay taxes on their prizes, Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman ruled Sunday.
The International Olympic Committee doesn’t give any cash awards for athletes winning medals in the Games, but Israel, like most countries, offers grants to its winners through the Israel Olympic Committee. In the Tokyo Games this summer, gymnasts Linoy Ashram and Artem Dolgopyat were each awarded NIS 500,000 for their gold medals, and Taekwondo bronze medalist Avishag Semberg received NIS 250,000. The 11 members of the judo team that won a bronze medal were given NIS 50,000 each. A silver medal winner would be entitled to NIS 400,000.
The same monetary awards are also given to medal winners in the Paralympic Games being played now through September 5. Israel has already won two gold medals and two silvers as of Sunday afternoon.

On Sunday, swimmer Mark Malyar won a gold medal in the men’s 400m freestyle swimming competition, and rower Moran Samuel won a silver medal in the Women’s Single 2000 meters row.
Until now, athletes were required to pay a 30% tax on the award. However, the new exemption will let the athletes keep all their winnings, in line with the trend recently set in the United States and other countries.
Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Gymnastics - Artistic - Men's Floor Exercise - Final - Ariake Gymnastics Centre, Tokyo, Japan - August 1, 2021 (REUTERS/LINDSEY WASSON).Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Gymnastics – Artistic – Men’s Floor Exercise – Final – Ariake Gymnastics Centre, Tokyo, Japan – August 1, 2021 (REUTERS/LINDSEY WASSON).
Israeli medal winners are compensated relatively well on an international level. For comparison, American gold medal winners are given $37,500, silver medal winners $22,500, and bronze medal winners $15,000, although they stand to make more money for endorsements afterward.
“This summer is full of national pride in Israeli sports. However, it is not enough just to get excited and applaud, but to reach those athletes that we will recognize and appreciate in deeds as well,” Liberman said in a statement.
“The hard work, the many hours on the mattress or in the water, the many injuries and moments of crisis, these are moments that the public does not see on screen. “Therefore, I passed today a memorandum of law to amend the Income Tax Ordinance, which exempts a grant that is paid to athletes for winning a medal at the Olympic and Paralympic Games. This step is not only for them, it is for all of us.”

Source: Jerusalem Post

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