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Gov’t seeks harsher penalties for ‘economy crimes’

By JT - Mar 06,2018 - Last updated at Mar 06,2018

AMMAN — The Cabinet on Monday endorsed the rationale for amending the Economic Crimes Law, seeking tougher penalties, a senior official said.

Speaking to reporters at his weekly press briefing following the Cabinet meeting, Minister of State for Media Affairs and Government Spokesperson Mohammad Momani cited tax evasion and assaults on investors and their assets as crimes that require harsher punishments to deter, explaining that some investors face cases of “protection money” they are asked to pay to outlaws. 

The amendment came in the aftermath of establishing a special police unit concerned with protecting investors and their interests in the Kingdom. 

Momani said the changes to the law, in this regard, will help create a safer environment for incoming investments, adding that tax evasion also needs to be addressed, as those who exercise such a practice “steal from the pockets of citizens as tax revenues go to pay salaries and build roads, hospitals and schools”. 

After lifting main subsidies to increase domestic revenues, the government vowed to address the problem of tax evasion, which is estimated, according to some sources, at more than JD800 million a year. 

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