The resolution, which touches on a wide variety of tax related-issues, lays a basis for further parliamentary work on tax, inter alia fact finding by the Special Committee on Tax Rulings and the legislative work of the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee. It was passed by 444 votes to 110, with 41 abstentions.
In the text, MEPs welcome the “tax transparency” package tabled by the European Commission on 18 March, but call for further effective proposals to be tabled in the coming months to combat tax havens and tax avoidance.
"The fight against aggressive tax planning, tax evasion and tax avoidance is in the spotlight of public concern. This European Parliament resolution sends a strong political message, by advocating immediate action for tax transparency, taxation with social justice, and taxation policies that boost growth in a business-friendly environment", said Eva Kaili (S&D, EL), who steered the text through Parliament.
Parliament insists that tax competition should be fair and transparent. It severely criticises member states that allow their tax authorities to make tax deals with multinational companies, even when the activities taxed take place elsewhere. "Secret tax rulings go to the detriment of other countries' tax systems and distort free competition", the resolution says.
MEPs also recommend:
Simplifying national tax systems so as to reduce the administrative tax burden on individuals and companies
Doing away with obstacles that hinder cross-border activity
That more EU member states should join the eleven countries introducing a Financial Transaction Tax (FTT)
Introducing a Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB) for EU companies and - as a second step - for all other companies too
Taking action against harmful tax incentives on income from patent boxes (intellectual property rights)
Improving transparency around tax rulings, since they create opportunities for tax avoidance and tax competition
Improving access for national parliaments to content of tax rulings
Acting against selective tax benefits for certain companies,
That the European Commission should prepare a blacklist, before July 2015, of tax havens and countries whose tax practices distort competition
Suspending or revoking the banking or advisory licences of accountants, law firms and other financial advisors convicted of tax fraud
Shifting tax burdens away from labour to other forms of taxation
Improving VAT collection
Full press release
Moscovici debate: MEPs make the case for fairer taxation
© European Parliament
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