ECONOMIC progress seems to have brought an increase in various kinds of financial crime to Slovakia, particularly in the area of taxation, as data from the Interior Ministry released in February indicates that tax delinquencies grew by 60 percent from 2010 to 2011.
In 2010 the ministry identified 2,229 tax delinquencies but last year the number soared to 3,573, causing a loss to the state of €138 million, according to an analysis prepared by experts at Accace, which provides accounting, salary and tax advice services in Slovakia.
The highest share of frauds were in value added tax, followed by corporate income tax and income tax paid by individuals, Accace wrote, adding that so-called carousel frauds are the most common way to cheat by making false claims for refunds of VAT.
In a carousel scheme a murky chain of traders is created who then issue fictitious invoices to each other with the final link in the chain reclaiming VAT from the government that it has “paid”.
Other popular tax frauds are changed accounting methods, reclaiming VAT from one invoice in two different tax periods and undervaluation of prices upon which VAT is calculated, Accace wrote.
Based on statistics from the Interior Ministry, 1,927 cases of tax evasion were resolved in 2011, an increase of 60 percent from 2010.
Accace wrote that VAT frauds are the most common type of tax evasion in Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Romania as well.