Research that brings our money back: PROTAX kick-off meeting


Last week, PROTAX was officially launched in a two-day kick-off meeting held in Vienna. PROTAX is a project funded by the European Commission which will contribute to solutions for prevention and prosecution of tax crimes in the European Union. The consortium consists of researchers as well as practitioners including judges, tax authorities and police from Austria, Estonia, Ireland, Malta, Portugal and the United Kingdom.

In a first step PROTAX will conduct case studies representing typical or frequent tax crimes in EU Member States that involve a cross-national dimension. The case studies format allows to assess regulations beyond black letter law, considering national and trans-national legal provisions. With this approach we aim to shift the focus from law in the books to law in action.

The case studies provide substantial input for the next phases of PROTAX, including focus groups to explore corporate practices, a legal and institutional analysis of illicit financial flows in the EU, as well as a gap analysis of the current strategies to battle tax evasion. All the research will feed into tool-kits for policy makers and law enforcement agencies for combating tax crimes.

Currently, there exist three European Commission funded research projects which are combating financial crimes in the EU from different angles: PROTAX, COFFERS and FairTax. Seeking to create synergies, PROTAX invited a representative from COFFERS, a project to combat fiscal fraud that was launched one year ago, to present their current research status as well as achievements and challenges of their work.

More information on PROTAX.