After being accused by some politicians and the press for abuses in the campaign against tax evasion amongst the small business owners, the National Fiscal Administration Agency (ANAF) leadership has reacted and launched, in its turn, tough accusations. ANAF’s main targets of criticism and discontent are the latest public statements made by MEP Monica Macovei and the co-chair of the National Liberal Party (PNL) Alina Gorghiu, blamed of manipulation and misinformation.
“It’s the second time, when with a full knowledge, MEP Monica Macovei launches false accusations against ANAF. After she urged Romanians to take to the streets and to stake out every ANAF office , MEP Monica Macovei recently reaffirmed that” ANAF inspectors hunt the small debtors for 5, 10, 100 or 1000 RON rather than hunting the big debtors. MEP Monica Macovei continues to misinform the public about the work of one of the most important state institutions, ” ANAF shows in a release on Monday, signed by the head of the institution, Gelu Stefan Diaconu.
“Climbed on the wave of populism, she manipulates the public opinion without any restraint, saying that the Antifraud Directorate focuses only on boutiques. In addition, although MEP Monica Macovei, as the former Minister of Justice knows that recovering damages by ANAF is hampered by a percentage close to 50%, by the work of the judiciary, misinforms with ease, placing all responsibility on ANAF,” says the institution’s chief Gelu Diaconu.
He also accuses Macovei that along with Alina Gorghiu and other political leaders, “has managed to assume a position adverse to that expressed by Transparency International Romania”, which recently issued a press release in which ANAF actions to combat evasion and strengthen fiscal discipline are welcomed.
“To have expectations and to induce to the public the idea that Antifraud Directorate inspectors can fix in two years everything that had been done wrong in 25 years is proof of unseriousness and of the inability to understand the complexity of this institution. I strongly disagree with this campaign against ANAF, waged by sound names of Romanian politics, ” the ANAF’s head pointed out.
Macovei asked Romanians to take to the streets: “Stake out every ANAF office”
MEP Monica Macovei, founder of the M10 party, has asked Romanians last Monday to take to the streets in order to react against the measures recently taken by the National Fiscal Administration Agency (ANAF). Macovei believes that the Agency should target big debtors, not to kill off small family-owned businesses “that create jobs.”
“But what do we see these days? We see ANAF’s new cars with tinted windows – because they’ve bought new cars – going to the markets, boutiques, small stores where families have small businesses and shutting them down for differences of RON 3, 5, 10. Good people, ANAF is designed to go after big debtors, not to kill off this small, private, family business sector that creates jobs! You have to promote it in order to create jobs, not to stop it, not to freeze its accounts, not to issue a fine it will never be able to pay. You’ve shut it down and you’ve left two or three people without jobs!” Monica Macovei stated on Digi24.
“On the other hand, those with large untaxed wealth, those that received final court rulings, the ones from which you should confiscate hundreds of millions, probably sit on the beach, in various islands, or play the roulette in Monaco,” he added.
At the same time, the former Justice Minister underscored that essential in the fight against corruption is to confiscate bribe money and money that cannot be justified, but also that Romania does not need another agency for the recovery of damages. Macovei claims that protests could be a solution in order to put public pressure on ANAF.
“I am glad every time people take to the streets, even if they are 5, 10 or 100. And more and more have to take to the streets, because indifferent people are the greatest danger to democracy. We have to take to the streets! This is not instigation, it’s the exercise of our right to protest. If we are not careful the ruling power will conquer us completely. And I would say: go out and stake out every ANAF office!” the MEP stated.
232 companies out of one million sanctioned with activity suspension following campaign against evasion
Prime Minister Victor Ponta announced last Wednesday that 232 companies out of one million contributors were sanctioned nationwide by suspending their activity, following the National Agency for Fiscal Administration (ANAF) campaign against tax evasion.
‘I continue to maintain, and I certainly assume the corresponding curses, the fact that combating tax evasion is needed in Romania, that the law is law for everyone and that tax evasion is a phenomenon that must be fought against. (…) It is important not to have any abuses or exaggerations in this campaign that I support. The first exaggeration is with the general persecution. I received the notification from ANAF: there are 232 companies, out of one million contributors, that were sanctioned with the activity suspension, therefore 232 nationwide. If out of 232, a number of 150 probably deserved it, the others… I want no abuses to exist,’ the Prime Minister said in the beginning of the Government meeting.
Ponta maintained that the additional collections of one billion euros to the budget in the first months of the year come from combating high evasion and not from sanctioning the small economic agents.
‘It is not small shops where we have one billion euros from, but from combating high tax evasion. However, each Romanian citizen and each company must pay the debts,’ the Prime Minister pointed out.
The head of Government asked that the amendment of the law be discussed in the next Government meeting, so that up to the 300 lei threshold of not taxed difference only a fine be applied.
‘Let us not take the toughest measure from the beginning, let it be a measure with financial consequences for the one who doesn’t observe the law!,’ the Prime Minister added.
Gov’t to set up agency for recovery of damages
Premier Victor Ponta announced that the government will set up an agency for the recovery of damages set through court decisions. The draft on the setting up of the agency should be ready by the end of July. Ponta says that the total value that has to be recovered stands at RON 3.2 bln, but that nothing can be recovered from many persons that have been convicted.
“I proposed the setting up of the agency within the ministry because here there is already an office that concerns international procedures on the issue of distraint. The institutions will have to collaborate very well from now on. The office will be integrated, structured. Work on the draft was done with the Finance Ministry,” Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc stated.