If there’s this much money to be had from tackling tax evasion why won’t HMRC go for it nationwide?

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HMRC is very proud to announce initiatives these days - very small targeted programmes trying to tackle tax evasion in limited sectors in limited areas. The latest was announced here.

The sectors targeted, places where theuy're to be targeted and expected yields are:

  • Legal profession in London – expected yield £3m
  • Grocery and retail in South and North Wales, the North West of England and the South West of England - expected yield £3.75m
  • Hair and beauty in the North East of England - expected yield £3.75m
  • Restaurants in the South East of England and the Solent - expected yield £2.5m
  • The motor trade in Scotland - expected yield £3m

Now if Hair & Beauty in the north east (for example) can yield so much the simple question is this: why not tackle it nationwide? Instead of sacking staff around the country why isn't HMRC taking them on to beat the curse of tax evasion?

If the activity yields revenue it makes sense.

It helps close the deficit.

It provides employment when there are no jobs available.

And most importantly, it provides a level playing field for honest businesses.

Why won't the government permit the glaringly obvious use of public money to raise public money? Or does that go against all their principles?