No wonder HMRC feel outnumbered

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HMRC issued their stuff with 20 rebuttals of the allegations made by the Parliamentary Accounts Committee before Christmas. I got sent a copy. I was fascinated by one comment:

17. HMRC have very few people with “deep knowledge of tax affairs”

We have more than 15,000 people working in tax professional roles here in HMRC. Most are expert in tax law and more than 2,000 have completed our four-year tax training and development programme. Our Tax Academy will ensure that we have the right number of tax professionals going forward.

So there are 2,000 fully trained people at HMRC.

The Chartered Institute of Tax has 15,000 members.

And add to that the members specialising in tax in the ICAEW, ACCA, Law Society, The Bar, Scottish and Irish institutes, and many more.

In that case does anyone think 2,000 fully qualified tax inspectors is enough? Only Dave Hartnett, presumably.

When will we start investing properly in tax collection and stop these people on whom the tax life blood of our economy depends being outnumbered.