This week a video has gone viral in which a Spanish tweeter criticizes what expensive surgical masks compared to some bought in Portugal. Specifically, and according to purchase ticket which shows, the lusas are 11 times cheaper and the tweeter in question buys 200 masks for 17.40 euros.
Portugal, box of 20 masks at € 1.74.
Spain, price of the mask set by the government at € 0.96 / unit.
When you load up the free market with absurd expropriations, pricing and prohibitions, these things happen. pic.twitter.com/8sweW5IS19
– Israel Cabrera (@Absolutexe) October 13, 2020
In the neighboring country, in addition, there is no obligation to wear face masks in the street, something that is required in Spain.
The price difference may be largely due to the VAT rate applied in both countries. Despite the fact that Spain has set a maximum price for surgical masks of 96 cents, the VAT applied to them is the general rate (the maximum), which is 21%.
Portugal, on the other hand, has announced the reduction of VAT on the sale of “respiratory protection masks and skin disinfectant gel” to 6%.