Chair of the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee and Liberal Democrat MEP Sharon Bowles, has today pledged to support EU plans to close a loophole which has allowed large corporations to avoid paying their fair share of tax.
Amendments to the EU’s corporate tax legislation, proposed by Taxation Commissioner Algirdas Semeta, will introduce an anti-abuse clause which will prevent companies including Google, Amazon, Starbucks, and Apple from stockpiling their profits in countries with lower tax rates.
Ms Bowles has led calls for the introduction of country-by-country reporting in the EU to clamp down on aggressive corporate tax avoidance.
As part of the revision of the EU’s Accounting Directive, Ms Bowles is currently seeking to extend these disclosure requirements so that they apply to all large EU firms in each country in which they operate.
Ms Bowles is also calling on EU countries to implement anti-tax abuse rules known as GAAR rules.
Commenting, Ms Bowles said:
“The introduction of an anti-abuse clause is crucial if we are to prevent aggressive tax avoidance and the shifting of profits to low-tax destinations abroad.
“Listening to both Angel Gurría, the Secretary-General of the OECD, and Commissioner Semeta today in the European Parliament has only served to strengthen my resolve to push for greater transparency in corporate tax matters in Europe.
“As I have argued for many years, the bottom line is that companies should pay their fair share of tax in the country where they conduct business. The Commission’s proposal would help to ensure that this principle is upheld.”