HER MAJESTY’S Revenue and Customs (HMRC) netted £23.9bn in additional revenues last year, with the tax authorities saying that the boost to their coffers comes from more stringent investigations.
Revenue from this source is now at its highest level on record. The department says its income from investigations has risen by £3.2bn from the previous 12 months, and is two and a half times higher than the £9bn collected three years ago.
Four fifths of the tax avoidance cases that have been heard in court since the last election have been won for the government, according to HMRC.
“We set HMRC ambitious targets to increase its yield and the figures published today demonstrate that HMRC is successfully meeting these challenges,” said David Gauke, exchequer secretary to the Treasury.
The figure collected is £1bn more than the target set by the government in last year’s autumn statement.
The government says it has reduced the tax gap – the difference between what is owed and what is collected – from an 8.3 per cent difference in 2005-06 to seven per cent in 2011-12.