Egypt’s Finance Minister Mohamed Maait has approved the extension of the deadline for filing real estate tax returns until the end of March 2021, Invest-Gate reports.

The move gives citizens more time to deposit their tax returns and reduces overcrowding at property tax offices, amidst fears over the second wave of COVID-19, Maait uncovered in an official statement on December 29.

Owners of properties built from July to December were originally required to put in their property tax returns before the end of last December.

The minister called on taxpayers to speedily settle the real estate taxes they owe for their units, thereby benefiting from the add-ons provided as part of the newly-introduced law easing fines for late tax payments.

In July 2020, Egypt’s parliament had signed off on a new bill that waives fines imposed for the late payment of tax dues, which should alleviate burdens on taxpayers and curb the adverse impacts of the Coronavirus crisis, Maait announced in an earlier press release.

The legislation exempts taxpayers from paying 90% of extra fees imposed for late tax payments if dues are met within 60 days from the date the law comes into effect, whereas 70% if paid within the next 60 days and 50% if settled within the subsequent 60 days.