Management tier of SKAT increasingly top-heavy, report reveals – The Post

Management tier of SKAT increasingly top-heavy, report reveals

The beleaguered and much-maligned Danish tax authority is under fire again – this time for hiring too many bosses

Unfortunately, clawing back tax from Danes is not at simple as just pressing a button (photo: flickr/Phillip Ingham)
September 5th, 2018 12:17 pm| by Stephen Gadd
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A newly-published survey carried out for Finans reveals that over a one-year period the Danish tax authority SKAT has hired almost 100 people in management positions, which equates to a 25 percent rise.

This is almost twice as many as the number employed as ordinary workers, writes Finans.

After a number of high-profile scandals there was broad political agreement that SKAT should hire more employees so that some of the outstanding debts could be collected. The organisation has also been split up into seven new units.

READ ALSO: Denmark missing out on tax haven billions

Too many chiefs?
Socialdemokratiet’s tax spokesperson Jesper Petersen finds the figures surprising. “I had no idea that the main result of the reorganisation of SKAT would be an explosion of personnel at management level,” he said.

Both Socialdemokratiet and Dansk Folkeparti have asked the tax minister, Karsten Lauritzen, for an explanation. They would far rather see more people engaged on beefing up the control and advisory functions of SKAT.

More boots on the ground needed
Petersen suggests that 1,000 extra people should be hired to cope with the challenge of clawing back lost tax revenue. “This is nothing that can be solved by boosting management. It requires some really experienced employees in the daily running of SKAT,” he said.

READ ALSO: Tax authorities report multi-billion-kroner fraud

In response to the criticism the tax minister has argued it is important to strengthen SKAT at a management level in the wake of all the scandals, and that as a consequence it is natural to hire management before hiring ordinary workers.