companies and rich private people smuggle their money with a letter-box companies to the tax authorities, large corporations, thanks to different systems in different EU-countries only Mini-taxes: Such practices wants to prevent the EU actually. However, at the Meeting of Finance Ministers in Brussels has shown once again how difficult it is.
So wanted to create the EU after the scandal of the “Panama papers” finally, at least a common black list of tax havens. On Tuesday, the Minister of Finance – Wolfgang Schäuble was from Secretary of state Thomas Steffen represented the criteria for the list decided. However, they achieved only after hours of discussion a compromise – and the list has become shorter and shorter.
the reason for the delay was a dispute about whether the tax rates of Zero, or almost Zero, should be a criterion for Definition as a tax haven. Several States, led by Britain, have, as expected, prevented. Now it just means that these harmful tax practices and Offshore should be prohibited constructions with which countries to attract profits from other countries. So the British have not protected, in the view of observers, both in their tax havens in Bermuda and Guernsey, as well as their relationship to the United States, which are also some of the EU criteria.
“Even the Bahamas would be on the outside”
“It’s grotesque that some EU member States consider that the criterion of zero taxation, than to strictly,” said the Left-members of the European Parliament Fabio de Masi. “Even the Bahamas would be in order.” Unlike the Green-financial politician Sven Giegold sees it: “The new formulation may not sound so nice, but it’s better.” Because some States could also do a lot of damage, without that, the tax rate is equal to Zero – such as for example, the Netherlands show. The new formulation now covers also other practices than just the tax rate.
the Details of The black list are in the so-called “group code of conduct” – a high – ranking tax experts of the member States Committee of the European Council further advise. By the end of 2017, the list should be ready. Why a country on your lands, and another not, but, for the apparently secret, much to the Annoyance of Giegold: “It is problematic, if the process for the formation of the black list itself is black.”
The Finance Ministers also discussed the EU-wide harmonisation of corporate taxation. The EU wants to prevent, that corporations reduce through the clever exploitation of the different tax systems in the EU your tax burden dramatically. In this way, for instance, Apple has paid according to the EU Commission taxes 2014 all 0.005 percent on its European profits.
tax burden for corporations could continue.
fall is The magic word in the fight against such excesses is the German CCCTB (the”Common Consolidated corporate tax base”) You should unify the rules for the determination of corporate profits across the EU and the tax burden on the basis of the whole of the EU, profits are set.
in 2011, wanted to introduce the EU both at the same time, which failed promptly. So you tried it now in two steps: First, the common rules for the profit determination should then be about the distribution of tax revenues among the EU States. The Problem: The second part is by far more complicated, partly because the EU member States to determine the amount of your taxes also in the future – and because there is likely to be within the EU winners and losers.
If the second step comes at all, is therefore open. The Finance Minister called on Tuesday, only a proposal from the Commission, to agree first on the harmonisation of the tax rules.
critics fear that, as a result, everything will be even worse. “By the common EU rules, companies have it in the future, even easier to take advantage of tax benefits in individual States,” said the Left-politician de Masi. “If the profits are not charged at the same time, EU-wide, could decrease the overall tax burden for corporations.”
Summary: The EU is making progress in the fight against tax evasion only in small steps. The British to water down the plans for a blacklist of tax havens, and the EU-wide harmonisation of corporate taxation continues to make Trouble.