Africa: EU Anti-Tax Avoidance Package Will Fail to End the Era of Tax Havens, Warns Oxfam
Despite EU intentions to crack down on tax avoidance, the European Commission’s Anti-Tax Avoidance Package does not do what it says on the tin, warns Oxfam, and developing countries will feel the EU’s failure most.
The package comes a week after the international NGO revealed that just 62 people own the same amount of wealth as the poorest half of the world.
Oxfam International EU Policy Advisor on Inequality and Taxation, Aurore Chardonnet, said:
On the ATAP package
“Expectations were high following ambitious statements by the EU Tax Commissioner Pierre Moscovici on the urgent need to address tax avoidance. But while corporate investment in tax havens has quadrupled since 2000, the Commission has lowered its reform ambitions. This raises the question of how serious the EU is about cracking down on tax avoidance.
“After the OECD’s failure to come up with adequate solutions against tax avoidance, the European Commission is now choosing the lowest common denominator-approach, which is very disappointing. The EU executive is certainly under pressure from nervous member states that have left open loopholes for companies to engage in aggressive tax planning. But citizens rightly expect more from the EU, which claims it wants to lead by example.
“It is ironic that this Anti-Tax Avoidance package will be discussed under the Dutch EU presidency since – as illustrated by the Starbucks case, the Netherlands is a tax haven. If EU member states, and especially the current Council presidency, are committed to ending the era of tax havens, they need to stop being hypocrites.”