Professor Rita de la Feria is quoted in The Independent discussing online tax fraud
Last week experts including Professor Rita de la Feria, told the Commons Public Accounts Committee that companies, which are based in countries including China and the US, openly admit to not paying any VAT, which allows them to undercut British competitors by up to 20 percent.
Professor de la Feria said that while this type of fraud was not a uniquely British problem, the UK’s borders were “some of the worst-policed in Europe”. She said she sympathised with tax authorities who are facing cuts and resource constraints with thousands of jobs slashed under the Conservative and coalition governments.
Rita highlighted the difficulty in investigating each transaction. Since individual transactions tend to be small amounts of money, it isn’t cost effective for HMRC to investigate them, despite the overall problem being a large one which has led to a “serious problem of enforcement” of the law.