Cortina – the crisis is over


Cortina is an up-market ski resort in Italy which has been in the news since new year as the takings from hotels, restaurants and bars over the Christmas and New Year period increased by 300 to 400% over the same period last year. Could it be a sign that the crisis is over at least for the rich?

Unfortunately the answer is no. This year the Finance Police had a crack down in Cortina. This meant that they were checking if bars and restaurants were issuing proper receipts and so providing tax to the state or were they pocketing the money themselves. From the increase in issued receipts and declared income it was obviously the latter.

The Finance Police also checked on the number of very expensive cars on the streets of Cortina. They discovered that there were over 200 expensive cars and of these 30% of the owners had a declared income of less than 30,000 euros per year.  Something not quite right there.

The event caused a stir in  all the papers and reaction went from, it was a good thing as it showed up how widespread tax evasion was in Italy and that is wasn’t just something which happened in the south, to criticism that it showed Italy in a bad light as Cortina was the “pearl of the Dolomites” and what would foreigners think.

Fighting tax evasion is one of the major aims of the new Government. In the local paper yesterday there was an article about a new ipad applications which allows customers to report to the police if they buy something but don’t get a receipt. The system doesn’t identify the specific shop but just the area in which the event occurred.

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