Combating tax evasion is a crucial matter for any government, the purpose being to collect all the amounts owed to the budget with a view to achieving the objectives contained in the government’s programme or meeting budgetary indicators, thereby raising the standard of living for the population. Tax evasion has become a phenomenon the scale of which reveals the weakness of a state or society. The European Union wishes to set up a black list of tax havens across the world, in the hope that the mere fact of a country’s being included on that list could discourage individuals and companies from placing money there. The recent ‘Panama Papers’ scandal is a clear example that demonstrates the worrying scale of this phenomenon.

What instruments are available to the Commission with regard to methods and techniques for combating tax evasion, and what will it do to further improve the tax system?