Revenue and Customs ‘cuts 3,400 jobs’

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will close 93 offices across the UK, resulting in the loss of 3,400 jobs, it has been reported.

The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union criticised the decision today claiming that the closures would be “bad for business, the public and the taxpayer”.

The union expressed “deep concern” that the ability of the department to collect revenues and provide tax advice would be undermined.

It claims that 17,000 jobs have already been cut since March 2004 and expressed fears that “skilled and experienced staff will effectively be forced out of a job as they will be unable to relocate or travel to their nearest office”.

Commenting of the news, Mark Serwotka, PCS general secretary, said that rural areas would be disproportionately hit with tax advice reduced to a bare minimum.

“As the recession worsens this will come as a bitter blow to a dedicated workforce and will lead to a loss of valuable knowledge and expertise,” he said.

“Office closures and job cuts will do nothing to tackle the £21.5 billion worth of uncollected tax and £25 billion lost through tax evasion. The government has to recognise that the erosion of public confidence can only be halted by having enough civil and public servants with the right resources to do the job.”

A spokeswoman for HMRC said a statement was currently being prepared.