The new tax chief yesterday moved to restore the credibility of her office by inviting public scrutiny of herself and her family's business interests. Commissioner of Inland Revenue Alice Lau Mak Yee-ming, 51, said none of her family was engaged in taxation-related businesses and vowed to set a good example by avoiding conflicts of interest. Her two predecessors, Wong Ho-sang and his temporary replacement Agnes Sin Law Yuk-lin, were forced out of the job in disgrace, Mr Wong in a scandal over his wife's tax consultancy firm, which he partly owned, and Ms Sin for a rental allowance swindle over which she has lodged an appeal. Addressing the media for the first time in her new role, Mrs Lau said her husband was a businessman with no involvement in taxation, accountancy or auditing. Her parents were retired. 'Their positions would not create any conflict of interest with my job,' she said. 'Also, I would not handle any tax files that posed such a conflict with me.' Mrs Lau pledged to act as a role model for colleagues in complying strictly with internal civil service rules on declaration of interests. Elevated to the commissioner's post after the last-minute withdrawal of a private-sector candidate, Mrs Lau dismissed suggestions that she was the second choice, adding she was experienced and capable of filling the position - vacant since the departure of Mr Wong in 1999. Mrs Lau said she was not surprised by her appointment as she had been with the department for 30 years. A recruitment campaign for the job was launched in November. Mrs Lau was promoted to D3 rank in February, which qualified her for the position, which carries a $170,750 salary. 'I am not a second choice for it [the job]. I was not considered in the first place because I was only a D2 official [with a maximum monthly salary of $130,050] at that time,' she said. Mrs Lau nominated fighting tax evasion as one of her top priorities. She said a group of United States inland revenue officials had been invited to train her staff and update their knowledge on tax evasion, particularly on cases relating to financial derivatives.