Study finds tax evasion of 1.031 companies


Source: O Globo, 14/11/2007

Dimmi Amora A study carried out by the State Secretariat of Finance showed that 1.031 companies declared that, in 2006, they had almost one third of their total revenue from payments received with credit cards.

These companies declared to the State Revenue that they had received, in total, R $ 247,3 million. But, with card payments alone, they earned R $ 611,3 million.

The difference of R $ 364 million generated a loss of collection of at least R $ 12 million, according to the study. For the state secretary of Finance, Joaquim Levy, the projected loss amount for all companies in the state may exceed R $ 1 billion.

To conduct the survey, technicians used only companies whose difference between what was declared and what they received with a credit card exceeded R $ 10 in the year.

According to Levy, only retail trade has revenues of R $ 50 billion, but the study evaluated less than 1% of the sector.

Of the total difference, 85% correspond to the sales of retail trade and vehicle repair. Another 14% are in the hotel, restaurant and snack bar area.

Other activities account for less than 1%. The technicians found that the companies with the shortest time of existence are the ones that have the biggest difference between billing by card and what was declared.

One sector that drew attention was restaurants. Despite having a special rate of 4% of ICMS, most of the approximately 10 establishments that appeared in the study say they have invoiced up to R $ 1,5 per month. However, most of them made millions. In companies in this sector alone, fraud may have led to a loss of R $ 600 million in ICMS. An estimate made in another 10,5 companies in the studied group, which had revenues in all months, shows that the government lost another R $ XNUMX million in ICMS in this group alone.

Secretary says there will be surveillance Levy believes that the potential for loss is greater. He estimates that the collection of the entire retail sector, for example, is one hundred times greater than that of the sample studied. According to him, it is possible to estimate that the loss of revenue is proportional.

- We work with the possibility of losing R $ 1 billion per year in tax evasion - said the secretary, recalling that there will be inspections in the sectors and regions where there were major discrepancies.

Credit card payments vary from sector to sector and are more concentrated in large cities. But, in the national average, according to data from the Brazilian Association of Credit and Service Card Companies, 18% of all payments in the country in 2006 were made via card. The money still corresponds to 58% and the check, 11%.

The president of the Retail Council of the Commercial Association of Rio, Daniel Plá, recalled that Rio is the state with the highest tax burden in the country and that this can contribute to tax evasion.

For him, companies of all sizes end up using evasion, which harms the market.

- The high burden tends to fuel corruption, which is unfortunate.

We have to make Rio more competitive and transparent - said Plá, who rated the study as positive. % 02 Domingos Peixoto / 15/8/2007