Portugal: Top tax official 'not sure' of losses with €10bn transfers offshore

Portugal's secretary of state for fiscal affairs said on Wednesday that he could not be sure whether or not tax should have been levied on almost €10 billion that between 2011 and 2014 were transferred to offshore financial centres without being analysed by the tax office, but said that there could be some losses involved, reports The Portugal News.

"I'm not in a position to state whether there is a penny of tax missing," Fernando Rocha Andrade told parliament's committee of budget, finance and administrative modernisation.


 This was, he added, not least because "the question is more complex than has been reported" because the period during which there would be a liability for tax has not yet passed.

 Earlier, Rocha Andrade had said that what wrong in the handling of the transfers was in the tax office's failure to transmit the files containing the information provided by banks to its central computer system.

 His predecessor as secretary of state, Paulo Núncio, who served as part of a Social Democrat-People's Party coalition government, had earlier testified that he had "not authorised” the publication of statistics on transfers offshore, taking the view that he was not legally obliged to do so.

 Requests made in 2011 and 2012 by the then director-general of the tax office, received the response “seen” from the then secretary of state.

 “What does that mean?” asked Mariana Mortágua, a member of the committee for the Left Bloc.

 Paulo Núncio replied: “That means just that, that I had seen it.”

 Mortágua asked whether that means “publish” and Núncio replied “no”, saying that it was a “non-authorisation” for the publication of the statistics.

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