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Director General of ETCB: I am asking the Minister of Finance to decide upon my continuation in the present office

27 February 2015

On February 26 Mr Marek Helm, the Director General of the Estonian Tax and Customs Board (ETCB) had a meeting with Ms Maris Lauri, the Minister of Finance to submit his letter of resignation in consequence of the outburst of public dissatisfaction with the latest activities of the Board.

Comments of Mr Marek Helm:
“I am convinced that thanks to the principal changes made in our control practice the ETCB staff has within the past three years achieved quite good results in subduing the black economy, starting with the prevention of illicit fuel trafficking across the border, regulation of the sale of used cars, combating fuel related frauds and attending to many other issues.
Besides, the introduction of the employment register and implementation of the enhanced VAT return by adding an annex to it, have provided the tax authority with necessary instruments  for detecting the fraudulent players and to ensure that honest businesses may enjoy equal conditions in free competition.

In addition to the market regulation all these innovative actions have brought about noticeable increase in tax revenues. 
A considerable part of these changes has been implemented in cooperation with the business operators and mostly upon their approval. My first concern in relation to this outburst of indignation is not to jeopardize the present good cooperation between the tax authority and the business operators. For that reason I asked the Minister of Finance to decide, if in this situation it is possible for me to continue the management of the Board.”
Comments of Ms Maris Lauri, the Minister of Finance: 
“The submission of a letter of resignation by Marek Helm came unexpectedly to me. ETCB has introduced a number of substantial innovations in their work, as a result of which the tax revenue has increased, and the improvement of the competitive environment is also a significant achievement. Several foreign countries are interested in the success story of ETCB and its efficient performance and are willing to apply the same measures in their countries.“

February 27, 2015