Outreach activities

Prof Colin Williams and members of the GREY project team were interviewed on FYR Macedonia’s main television channel. The ‘chat show’ style broadcast was a programme called 360 – watch it in full below:

Prof Colin Williams spoke to Cope-Cogea, the united voice of farmers and agri-cooperatives in the EU representing 28 million farmers, about how to tackle undeclared work in the agricultural sector. This united voice of European farmers includes the National Farmers Union from the UK and FNSEA from France.

International Experts, Industry and Law Enforcement Join to Combat Illegal Trade and Shadow Economy in Europe

Senior tax policy, tax administration and customs officials from 19 Eurasian countries met in Bucharest at the end of April 2015 to learn more about the latest strategies to tackle multibillion-dollar revenue losses stemming from illegal trade, counterfeits, and other aspects of the shadow economy.

Professor Colin Williams, coordinator of the GREY project, gave the opening academic overview and closing review of policy approaches.

As one of only two academic experts invited, other speakers included senior officials from the U.S. State Department, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, World Customs Organization, Interpol, Europol as well as senior officials from multi-national corporations in the tobacco (JT International, British American Tobacco), alcohol (SABMiller) and pharmaceuticals (Pfizer) industries.

The two-day “International Conference on the Shadow Economy and Taxation” was co-hosted by the International Tax and Investment Center, a nonprofit research and education organization focused on tax reform and public-private initiatives to improve the investment climate in transition economies, and Euromonitor Business Consulting Services.

Professor Williams, along with experienced enforcement officials, concluded the Conference by advising that a new approach was essential as we cannot police ourselves out of the current situation, and argued that we need to make it easier and more attractive for people and businesses to move from the shadow to the formal economy.

Arising out of his coordination of the GREY project, Professor Colin Williams was invited by Milanka Opacic, Deputy Prime Minister of Croatia, to provide the keynote address at a High-level Inter-Governmental Conference on Combating Undeclared Work in the European Union taking place in Dubrovnik on 28-29 April 2015.

This was attended by Deputy Prime Ministers, Cabinet Ministers and senior government officials from 24 European countries who met to discuss how they could cooperate to tackle the undeclared economy.

The outcome, expressed well by Helena Dalli, Minister of Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties in the Maltese government, was a raised awareness that besides complementing the traditional ‘sticks’ approach that punishes non-compliance with more ‘carrots’ to reward compliance, there was also a need for introducing awareness campaigns on the consequences of undeclared work targeted at enterprises, workers and the general public.

Summarizing the view of many countries, Deputy Prime Minister of Bulgaria, Ivaiol Kalfin stated, “Promotion of regulated labour relations between Bulgaria and other EU and non-EU countries is a priority of the Government”. The European Commission representative present, Jader Cane, urged governments to make full use of the European Social Fund to undertake coordinated responses.

Predrag Bejaovic, the Institue of Public Finance coordinator of the GREY project, appeared on a TV programme called Drustvena mreza (Social Network) on 31/3/15. It airs on HTV1, which is a Croatian public mainstream chanel, and was dedicated to all kinds of illegal activities and money laundering. The moderator, Blazenka Leib, spoke with Predrag about the GREY project and our activities to improve the public knowledge about all adverse characteristics of the unofficial economy. It was live show and very well rated by the viewers.

See photos of the event here.

Bulgarian National Information Day about Marie Curie actions, 27th January 2015.
Lyubo Miskkov, with support from Mrs. Antoaneta Mateeva (Dept. International Relations and EU Programs Bulgarian Academy of Science), gave a talk at the National Information Day on Marie Curie actions in Bulgaria. The event received the support of Ministry of Education and Science. It was attended by university students, members of the general public, NGOs, local entrepreneurs and owners of innovation businesses.

Marie Curie Ambassadors visit Longley Park School in Sheffield
In November 2014, Rositsa Dzhekova and Josip Franic, Marie Curie Fellows on the GREY IAPP project, spoke to students attending Longley Park College in Sheffield in their role as ‘Marie Curie Ambassadors’. They described the Marie Curie Fellowships system, the IAPP programme, discussed what it is like to be a Marie Curie Fellow moving from one nation to another to work, and also what it is like moving from the private sector to higher education on secondment.

In line with the GREY project, they then provided a talk to the children on “Why should you pay your taxes?” and engaged them in a discussion to consider why this is a good idea and to think about the negative consequences of engaging in tax evasion and undeclared work practices.

See more photos from this event here.

The 1st GREY International Workshop held in Sofia on the 4th September 2014 attracted a considerable amount of media attention.

Meanwhile, newspaper articles reporting the 1st GREY International Workshop can be found at: