Joint Enforcement Task Force to combat black economy
Minister for Finance Edward Scicluna yesterday announced the formation of a Joint Enforcement Task Force which he said will bolster the government’s efforts at combating the black economy.
Speaking during a press conference, Minister Scicluna explained that through JET, the government will channel the resources and technical knowhow of the Income Tax Department, VAT Department and Tax Compliant Unit to various degrees in order to prevent, detect, investigate, and prosecute offences related to unfair business competition and the avoidance and evasion of Income Tax, VAT, National Insurance and Excise Tax in order to uphold the country’s licensing, regulatory and tax laws.
“JET will in no way replace any of these entities and departments,” said Minister Scicluna, “it will serve as a centre of intelligence and a central coordination unit supporting increased cooperation between these departments and entities, as well as facilitating the sharing of information between them.”
He also confirmed that JET will be enabled to spearhead its own risk assessments and investigations.
JET will be recruiting a core team of multidisciplinary professionals in the field of gathering of intelligence, risk analysis, inspections and investigations. The core team will be supported by staff from the various entities and departments who will be retrained for this purpose.