HMRC Announces Increase Of 'Tax Gap' To £34 Billion

Tax Expert Says HMRC Should Increase Targeting Of Illegal Activity By Taxpayers


David Shirt, Press Officer | 0161 838 3094

According to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the gap between the amount of tax collected and the sum owed has grown to £34 billion.

The figures revealed today show that  £14.2 billion of income tax, national insurance contributions or capital gains tax went uncollected, along with £12.4 billion of VAT.

Corporation tax accounted for £3.9 billion of the gap, with excise duties accounting for almost £3 billion.

HMRC attributed £3.1 billion of the gap to tax avoidance.

Financial Secretary to the Treasury David Gauke said: "Since 2010/11 the percentage tax gap has stayed lower than at any point under the previous government, saving the country GBP4 billion.

"Today's figures show that there's still more work to do but our continued drive to tackle avoidance means that avoidance is down.

"In 2012/13 HMRC achieved a compliance yield of GBP20.7 billion, rising to a record breaking GBP23.9 billion in 2013/14.

"The UK has one of the lowest tax gaps in the world but HMRC will continue to deploy its resources and skills to maintain the downward pressure that has proved so effective in recent years."

Phil Berwick, Partner* and Head of Contentious Tax at law firm Irwin Mitchell, said:

* Non-lawyer