Reducing tax evasion could help save the Amazon

4 November 2014

Cracking down on tax evasion and taxing unused land would help slow deforestation for land speculation in the Brazilian Amazon, argues a new report published by Imazon.

The report, O potencial do Imposto Territorial Rural contra o desmatamento especulativo na Amazônia, uses satellite imagery and publicly available data on properties and tax payment rates in the Amazon state of Pará. It finds that tax evasion in the state is widespread, topping 270 million reais ($108 million) a year, mostly from landowners declaring below market values for their holdings and overstating the extent of their properties to get around limitations on how much forest they can legally clear.

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