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Romania lost 6.5bn euros in 2018 due to VAT non-collection


Romania lost 6.595 billion euros in 2018 due to non-collection of value added tax (VAT) revenues, according to a study on the VAT collection deficit published on Thursday by the European Commission.

As in 2017, Romania registered the largest VAT collection deficit at national level, 33.8% of the expected revenues from this tax not being collected in 2018. Romania is followed by Greece (30.1%) and Lithuania (25.9%). The lowest deficits were in Sweden (0.7%), Croatia (3.5%) and Finland (3.6%).

The largest VAT collection deficits were recorded in Italy (35.4 billion euros), the United Kingdom (23.5 billion euros) and Germany (22 billion euros).

At the level of the community bloc, the EU countries lost 140 billion euros in 2018, by not collecting revenues representing value added tax (VAT). In nominal terms, in 2018 the total VAT deficit in the EU decreased slightly, by almost one billion euros to 140.04 billion euros, slowing down from a decrease of 2.9 billion euros in 2017. This downward trend is to continue for another year, although the pandemic is likely to reverse the positive trend.

The so-called "deficit VAT collection," the overall difference between the expected VAT revenues and the amount actually collected, has decreased to a certain extent compared to previous years, but remains very large.

However, estimates for 2020 indicate a reversal of this trend, with a potential loss of 164 billion euros, following the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy.

In 2018, the member states' individual performances still varied significantly. In half of the EU member states there was a deficit above the average of 9.2%, although 21 countries reported decreases compared to 2017, the most important in Hungary (minus 5.1%), Latvia (minus 4.4%) and Poland (minus 4.3%). The highest increase was in Luxembourg (2.5%), followed by marginal increases in Lithuania (0.8%) and Austria (0.5%).