New tax chief appointed at last in Latvia

After a months-long search, Ieva Jaunzeme was appointed by the Cabinet of Ministers as the new head of the State Revenue Service (VID), Latvia's tax collection agency, on February 5.

She has been appointed to a five-year term.

Jaunzeme was selected for the post of the Revenue Service's head last November. Then Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola (Greens/Farmers) said that it would be up to the new government to decide on Jaunzeme’s appointment as the Revenue Service’s head, and that duly came to pass on Tuesday.

The current Finance Minister Janis Reirs (New Unity) said in January that there were no reasons for not appointing Jaunzeme the Revenue Service's head.

Jaunzeme, previously head of the Economics Ministry's Administration, has also served as the Welfare Ministry's state secretary and, she was the Competition Council's head for six years and, before that, Latvia's representative at the European Union. Jaunzeme has also been Latvian Employers Confederation's head for four years.

A total of 24 candidates applied for the position of the Revenue Service's chief.

As previously reported by LSM, a previous competition in 2018 came up with a new head of VID who promptly resigned before taking up his post.

That contest in turn had been prompted by the sudden death of his predecessor. Before that, a previous tax chief had announced an ambitious reform plan for the organization - and also resigned soon afterwards citing the futility of trying to change it.

Various other controversies have also beset VID, and yet according to recent research Latvia's tax system rates as one of the top 20 in the world.

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