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Autumn Statement: tax avoidance crackdown to raise £9bn over five years

Autumn Statement: tax avoidance crackdown to raise £9bn over five years

Chancellor George Osborne has stepped up his crackdown on tax anti-avoidance, announcing 'the largest package of measures' to tackle the issue.

The chancellor said the package which tackles tax avoidance and error will raise over £9 billion over the next five years.

In the Autumn Statement document, the Treasury said efforts to tackle tax avoidance and evasion had raised over £6.8 billion of new revenue over the forecast period and protected billions of pounds of revenue, making it the largest avoidance and evasion package announced during this Parliament.

The Treasury said this had been supported by the government’s investment of £1 billion investment in HMRC to tackle tax avoidance and evasion, allowing HMRC to secure over £60 billion in what it described as 'compliance yield' since the start of this Parliament. This is forecast to reach over £120 billion by the end of 2015-16, which is almost £40 billion more than would have been achieved had HMRC’s performance stayed at 2010 levels.

To build on this, the government is planning to increase HMRC’s compliance yield targets to secure a further £3.7 billion in compliance yield by the end of 2015-16. 

Back in March the government said it expected to save around £230 million through the general anti-abuse rule (GAAR) and £4.6 billion overall through its wide-reaching crackdown on abusive tax avoidance and tax evasion by 2018.

HMRC is targeting promoters and users of abusive tax avoidance schemes with GAAR, introduced in the Finance Bill 2013.

In the Budget the Treasury expected the rule to bring in £60 million in 2014/15, £50 million in 2015/16, £40 million 2016/17, and £85 million 2017/18.

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