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Third of UK ‘tax gap’ due to evasion or avoidance

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A third of 'tax-gap' in the UK is solely down to tax avoidance and evasion, says HMRC.

Nearlya third of the UK ‘tax gap’ – the difference between what is owed to Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and what is collected – is due to tax avoidance or evasion, according to the latest estimates.

Figures for 2010/11 have put the tax gap at £32bn, £1bn higher than that recorded in 2009/10 and 6.7% of total liabilities, HMRC said.

A total of £9bn of this gap relates to tax avoidance and evasion.

HMRC said tax is not collected for a number of reasons, including evasion and avoidance, as well as customer error, the hidden economy and criminal attacks.

HMRC says tax avoidance “is not the same as legitimate tax planning”.

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