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Taxes: VAT, 160 billion euros’ evasion in the EU. Negative records in Romania and Italy, Sweden Ok. Moscovici: “Inacceptable”

(Brussels) 160 billion euros’ VAT lost to non collection or evasion: this is the amount of the tax that has not been collected in 2014, in a report about Value Added Tax, based on the figures published by the European Commission today. “The surveys show that overall the difference between the expected tax revenue and the tax actually collected (the co-called ‘VAT gap’) is once again inadmissibly high”, the EU Executive’s report says. “The findings corroborate the call recently made by the EU Commission to reform the European Union’s VAT regime to fight frauds and make it more efficient. The member states must now follow up on the VAT policy that the EU Commission issued last April”. The VAT gap changes, depending on the EU country, from a highest of 37.9 % in Romania to a lowest of 1.2 % in Sweden. In absolute figures, the highest VAT gap is that of Italy (36.9 billion euros), while Luxembourg has the lowest one at 147 million euros. Pierre Moscovici, commissioner for economic and financial affairs, taxation and customs, states: “The member states lose dozens of billions of euros to uncollected VAT revenue: this is inacceptable. The current regime is deplorably unable to address the problem of frauds and miscalculations, and it’s clear that the figures will not improve on their own”. “The member states must quickly reach an agreement on the EU VAT regime”.

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