Tax and Fiscal Policy

Reports of large-scale fraud expose the flaws of Covid financial aid schemes

Annabel Denham writes for City AM

Annabel Denham, IEA Director of Communications, has penned an article commenting on the efficacy of the UK’s Coronavirus financial aid schemes, following reports that £5.8 billion was stolen from the Treasury through these initiatives.

Annabel argues that such widespread fraud raises questions about whether the cost to the taxpayer of schemes such as furlough and ‘eat out to help out’, was worth the outcome.

“Eat Out to Help Out represented one of the poorest uses of taxpayer money since £1.7bn was spent trying to grow groundnuts in East Africa back in the 1940s. Over one month, the government paid £522m for over 100m subsidised meals. The scheme delivered no obvious lasting benefit to restaurants in terms of footfall.”

Read the full article here.