The Value-Added Tax (VAT) Building is pictured in Beirut, Lebanon September 25, 2017. REUTERS/ Aziz Taher
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Bank Audi said Wednesday that the Lebanese authorities can close the country's fiscal gap if they combat tax evasion, which the bank estimated at $5 billion.There is no official estimate yet on the size of tax evasion in Lebanon, although officials admit that many sectors do not pay taxes to the government.Tax evasion is one of the most serious issues governments have faced since the Taif Accord. It added that this gap is almost equivalent to Lebanon's budget deficit and it mainly comes from a number of taxes, namely income tax, VAT, custom duties, EDL revenues and property taxes.It added that the third source of tax evasion is customs.The fifth source of fiscal evasion is property taxes, which is tied to property undervaluation in real estate registration.
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