Michaela Merz

How to fight against VAT fraud quicker – Directive 2006/112/EC amendment (quick reaction mechanism against VAT fraud)

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One of the topics high on the agenda in nearly every country, but especially in Europe, is to increase the governmental revenue. Improving the tax collection and tackling tax evasion are seen as ways how to achieve it. VAT fraud schemes like carousel and missing trader fraud evolve rapidly. These fraud phenomena have very often international dimensions. EU member states are confronted with the situation whereby the EU VAT Law does not provide the legal base to successfully fight against these fraud schemes. The amounts on stake are high. The Europol press release of 9 December 2009 mentioned that the Carbon credit fraud causes more than EUR 5 billion damage. To fight against international fraud schemes on individual country bases does not always bring the desired results. It is more than understandable that governments are trying to act as quick as possible to stop newly discovered fraud schemes. The EU therefore would like to provide a legal base for all Member States to take immediate action. This will be called Quick Reaction Mechanism. QRM is a procedure to adopt derogatory measures quickly in order to be able to fight against aggressive forms of VAT fraud immediately.

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