ECONOMY

Special Inspections Service is going after bigger fish

The Special Inspections Service (YPEE) is now focusing on major companies with a turnover in excess of 800,000 euros per year. Economy and Finance Ministry sources suggest that the monitoring squad is going for the «big fish,» which will glean more taxes for the state coffers. Records show that the rate of tax evasion remains the same in big and small businesses: around 40 percent. However the taxes and fines are far greater in big companies due to their higher turnover. In this context, YPEE will try to help the 2008 budget which requires -6.5 billion more in revenues than the 2007 budget. Companies with a high credit balance of value-added tax (VAT) will also be checked. There reportedly are more than 15,000 companies that the ministry suspects have not paid the VAT due or have received large tax returns using forged or bogus invoices. Checks will also include companies whose VAT paid was less than 1.5 percent of their turnover. The companies to be monitored are in the domains of oil products, entertainment, construction, health and education, as well as hotels and restaurants. The General Secretariat for Information Technology has already sent to YPEE the list with the suspicious companies, which will then be forwarded to the regional offices of the service and the competent tax authorities. YPEE will also inspect tax and customs officers involved in illegal tax returns at export companies.