by Tanya Thomas on  February 2, 2011 at 9:26 AM Lifestyle News
 Tax on 50 Bln Euros of Income Evaded By Italians in 2010
Close to 50 billion euros (68 billion dollars) in income went undeclared in Italy in 2010, a rise of 46 percent on the previous year, according to a financial police report Monday on the fight against tax evasion.

Out of over 49 billion euros unreported last year, 20 billion euros belonged to 8,850 people in employment while over 10 billion euros was sent abroad to avoid tax.

Twenty-six percent of the funds shipped abroad went to Luxembourg and 25 percent to Switzerland.

Another seven percent ended up in Britain while six percent went to Panama, the report said.

Italy has stepped up the fight against tax evasion and the underground economy in order to boost government coffers and help reduce the country's high public deficit.

In May, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi disclosed that nearly a quarter of the Italian economy goes untaxed, representing a loss to the state of 120 billion euros (148 billion dollars) a year.

The push to recover funds has already led to the regulation of 104.5 billion euros and has brought in 5.6 billion for the state.

According to the report, financial police also unmasked close to 4,500 people last year who were illegally claiming invalidity or poverty benefits, and seized over 110 million counterfeit products.

In the fight against organised crime, three billion euros worth of mafia-owned assets were confiscated in 2010, a rise of 30 percent compared to the previous year, while 20.5 tonnes of drugs were seized.

Source: AFP

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