The 6 measures for tax evasion

By | May 7, 2023

Of Prokopi Hatzinikolaou

Electronic transactions, automated controls and information received by the Independent Tax Authority from tax authorities and trading platforms have led to the reduction of the VAT “gap”. According to the information, the VAT gap of the potential VAT collection has narrowed to around 2.4 billion euros, from around 4.7 billion euros in 2019. The aim of financial staff and the tax administration is to reduce the gap by 1,000 million euros in the coming years with the entry into force of the new applications.

As Finance Minister Chr. Staikouras said, “it turns out that the government’s efforts to combat tax evasion, digitize the economy, intensify controls and promote electronic transactions, combined with significant reductions in taxes and security contributions social, are paying off. Tax compliance is increasing. The VAT gap is While the European Commission acknowledges the substantial, not contemporaneous, progress that has been made in strengthening the effectiveness of the VAT system.”

The narrowing of the VAT gap has whetted the appetite of the tax administration and new applications are underway, some of which will be implemented in the near future and others in 2024. The aim is to extend the electronic tax system. to all economic activity both in terms of controls and in the attention to natural and legal persons. The new government and AADE plan is included in the National Reform Plan, with resources from the Development Fund facilitating financing while accelerating implementation. In particular, the plan for the new electronic tax office includes:

1. Digital waybill. The issuance and electronic monitoring of all traded products and merchandise (consignment note) is in progress, since the corresponding primary legislation has been approved and the infrastructure and applications for monitoring these transactions are in place. This subproject is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2023.

2. POS interface with cash registers. Progress is being made on the reform of the interface of cash registers and POS with the tax authorities (IAPR) in order to improve transparency, combat tax evasion and create fiscal space for tax relief. By the end of March, more than 447,500 businesses had already connected their cash registers electronically to myDATA, to automatically record their retail transactions. The full development of the platform means that at least 500,000 businesses will have connected their electronic cash registers with POS and Taxis by the second quarter of 2024.

3. Digital transformation. The investment for the Digital Transformation of the Tax and Customs Administration (with a total budget of 258 million euros) aims to strengthen the capacity of the Tax Authority, to improve its overall performance, to improve the quality of services provided to individuals and companies. The main challenges are to replace and modernize basic tax information systems to fill the gaps in existing applications, digitize all manual forms and processes, and ensure interoperability in AADE’s internal systems, as well as with its computer systems for the rest of the public. . sector.

4. Equipment. The purchase of 10,500 new personal computers is underway and will be available by the fourth quarter of 2023 (laptops, scanners, etc.). Likewise, by the end of 2024 the new Document Management System, the new Content Management System and -for the first time- a Task Management System that will coordinate and support daily work will be operational.

5. Digital controls. The digital transformation of tax audits aims to improve the operation of AADE’s digital systems, to make it easier for audit services to use the large amount of data they have and monitor financial transactions. Major objectives include maximizing the use of data to combat tax evasion and smuggling, modernizing IAPR’s critical information systems, expanding data collection and internal/external interoperability, building capacity for data-driven decisions and automated processes. , and collect taxes through controls and documentary investigations. .

6. Artificial intelligence. The new applications, mainly in the field of audits, will be supported through the modernization of AADE’s data usage capabilities, through the new Business Intelligence & Data Analytics environment (contract award is expected for the first quarter 2024), which you can expect to influence behaviors, as well as the use of the fully functional myDATA system, which collects business transaction information and supports the implementation of e-invoicing and e-accounting. The reform will be completed with the improvement of the computer interface for the use of information by banks. This system will be ready for extensive testing with banks by the second quarter of 2023.

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