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French tax cheats to boost budget by €2.4 bn

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French tax cheats to boost budget by €2.4 bn
Photo: AFP
15:25 CEST+02:00
France's budget for 2016 has been given a timely boost to the tune of €2.4 billion thanks to French tax cheats coming clean.
Finance Minister Michel Sapin said on Monday that France's 2016 financial budget would have an injection of €2.4 billion ($2.7 billion) - money made from the regularization of thousands of bank accounts that were being operated secretly offshore.
Some 85 percent of these were in Switzerland, he reported.
In all the French taxman is set to recover €2.65 billion.
Sapin said that the figures showed that France "made the right move" in 2013 when authorities launched a push to get French people to come forward and regularize their hidden funds.
The move, which promised lower penalties to the tax fraudsters, saw 8,500 people come forward in the first three months alone - as many as had submitted applications in the previous four years. 
The minister predicted that such tax secrecy would be a thing of the past within three to four years, saying taxpayers know that "if they don't come forward now, it will only be harder tomorrow", reported Le Figaro newspaper.
France's full financial budget for next year will be announced on Wednesday. 
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