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THE ANAF TAKES A SWING AT MULTINATIONALS: "Almost one billion Euros have been taken out of Romania in the last five years"

A.G. (translated by Cosmin Ghidoveanu)
Ziarul BURSA #English Section /

"Almost one billion Euros have been taken out of Romania in the last five years"

Almost one billion Euros was removed from Romania in the last five years, and all that money could have been used to finance many projects, the General Manager of the Major Taxpayers Department of the National Tax Administration (ANAF), Ionuţ Mişa, said at the end of last week, referring to transfer pricing.

He said: "From five companies that operate in the oil, retail, tobacco and electronics trade sectors, adjustments of 87 million lei have been made. Just five companies, think of what that means on a national level.

The General Department of major taxpayers today has 1,500 companies in its portfolio. The amounts are big, very big. A study which I conducted in the beginning of 2015 on a portfolio of 2,500 companies led to the conclusion that almost 1 billion Euros in the last five years have been taken out of Romania. With those amounts a large number of projects could be completed in Romania and they would have major benefits for Romanians".

According to him, a company in the tobacco sector has acquired the tobacco from another affiliated subsidiary from a member country at a very high price, which it sold in Romania at a very low profit margin.

"In Romania it would pay almost no taxes at all, and all the profits would go to the country in question. We have succeeded in identifying this type of transactions and we have succeeded in making adjustments of 12.3 million lei", the ANAF official said.

He explained in context, how the money made by retailers is taken out of the country: "In retail products with added value are imported from outside the country and are sold in Romania. Companies are saying that they have created many jobs, «it's because of us you have so many jobs», but they forget to mention a very important part. These jobs have lousy salaries. We should look at the fact that these companies import the goods from abroad at a low price, they then sell them in Romania, and the profit tax is only applied to the difference. Very little money stays in Romania. Essentially the jobs in the countries where those goods were produced are well paid, they have added value in that country and less in Romania. That is one of the most used methods".

The Tax Administration representative said that there are companies that import various goods and services from the other countries at a very high price which they sell in Romania.

"There are companies in the automotive industry that have a profitability rate of 2% every year. It is very hard to achieve a constant profit rate. It is an economic cyclicity, there is a business environment. In order to get 2% year after year means they have great consultants, they are benefiting from that, they have very good techniques that they are using".

He also said that the Major Taxpayers Division collects almost 50% of budget revenues and they manage all the major companies, with high turnovers and volumes.

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