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Greece to Name and Shame Tax Evaders

Tough times call for tough measures and in Greece the government is planning a major crackdown on tax evaders that will involve naming and shaming those who do not pay up.

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Macduff Everton | Ironica | Getty Images

Debt restructuring is now seen as inevitable by the market; the authorities in Athens plan to raise over 12 billion euros ($18 billion) by a major restructuring of its revenue-raising operations.

“The tax administration structure will be fundamentally re-organized based on best operational practices with the assistance of international advisors,” the Greek finance ministry said in a statement.

“The national network of tax offices will be strategically restructured with a smaller number of strengthened tax offices which will be monitored on a monthly basis based on published indicators with clear sanctions for underperformance,” it added.

For those not paying their taxes in full the warning is stark; the Greek government plans to make an example of someone by the "identification and exemplary punishment of large-scale tax evasion."

This will involve working with overseas banks to share information on Greek nationals thought to be hiding money outside of the country.

Those with big bills from the tax man could also be named and shamed after a legislative amendment was passed to allow the publication of personal details of individuals with large arrears.

The Greek finance ministry also announced that Ioannis Diotis, the public prosecutor who brought the 17 November terrorist group to justice, will be put in charge of the newly-created Economic and Financial Crime Unit.