Tough new measures needed to tackle tax avoidance

Press Release by EFA MEP Jordi Solé (Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya – ERC)

The European Parliament has backed a report setting out tough new measures to tackle tax avoidance and financial crimes.

This is the result of a year-long special committee which was set up to look into the matter, following several recent scandals such as Luxleaks and the Panama papers.

Greens/EFA MEP Jordi Solé was a member of the special committee.

Speaking in the debate in the European Parliament, Jordi Solé welcomed the report but said:

“We in the Greens/EFA Group are fully committed to tax justice and the fight against tax evasion and avoidance and thus we see this report as basically a positive report.

“But despite the Parliament’s commitment, the reality is that a lot still has to be done to achieve fair and transparent tax systems across the EU.

“And this flawed reality means, for instance, Member states facilitating aggressive tax planning or with schemes that make them immediate away tax havens.

“Or a race to the bottom when it comes to corporate tax rates that undermine revenues and damages the public interest.

“Or the lack of political will amongst too many member states to deliver on key tax legislation such as the Common Consolidated Tax Base, taxation of digital services or public country by country reporting.

“We need results in these very important matters. We need to avoid the unanimity rule in the Council and move towards qualified majority, finally engaging this parliament not as an opinion-giver, but as co-legislator.”

The report also calls for greater co-operation between national authorities to tackle tax avoidance and suggests establishing an EU anti-money laundering watchdog.

This press release has been previously published on the website of the EFA Group in the European Parliament