If all the rich paid their taxes...
Luned Jones Media and Communications Officer, Wales
31st Jan 2013
Today (Jan 31) is the deadline for getting your tax form into the Inland Revenue, if you are one of the people who have to fill in a tax form.
Oxfam Cymru are using this date as a timely reminder of just what a giant hole in the economy is caused by some wealthy people who move heaven and earth to illegally evade as much tax as they possibly can. The charity's latest calculations reckon that tax evasion is depriving the UK economy of at least £5.2 billion a year.
Julian Rosser, head of Oxfam Cymru, says: "Austerity measures are hitting the poorest people in Wales hardest, but it wouldn't have to be like this if all the wealthy people paid their taxes in full,"
If that £5.2 billion was paid to the taxman and shared out among the poorest people in Wales and the rest of the UK. It could:
Provide over a thousand pounds a year to improve the energy efficiency of every household in Wales and the rest of the UK experiencing fuel poverty
Or double the amount of universal childcare entitlement to 25 hours per week, giving struggling families more flexibility to work
- Or prevent 9.4 million UK households from being £180 a year worse off by scrapping plans to put a 1 per cent cap on welfare uprating
Lifelong taxpayer Angela Morgan, 44, of Blackwood (pictured) who is now forced to claim benefits because of a serious long term health condition, said:
"There is an awful lot wrong with the tax system in this country."
Julian Rosser added: "Billions of pounds owed to the government are languishing in offshore bank accounts, leaving ordinary people to pick up the tab for support and services that we all rely on.
"Why should tax evaders get off scot-free whilst thousands of the poorest families in Wales are forced to go to food banks to feed their children, or go without heating when it's freezing outside?"