Category: Brussels

E.U., Citing Amazon and Apple, Tells Nations to Collect Tax

BRUSSELS — European competition regulators on Wednesday mounted a push against tax avoidance by Silicon Valley giants, announcing plans to take Ireland to court for failing to collect back taxes from Apple and ordering Luxembourg to claim unpaid taxes from Amazon. The effort, which comes as the European Union considers...

McDonald’s to scrap Luxembourg tax structure

Fast-food chain’s reorganisation means £800m from restaurants in Europe will flow through the UK instead McDonald’s is to scrap its controversial Luxembourg tax structure in a corporate shakeup that means $1bn (£800m) of income from fast-food restaurants across Europe will flow through the UK instead. The move comes 12 months...

Bermuda dodges EU tax-haven blacklist bullet

Bermuda has reportedly avoided being placed on an European Union blacklist after Britain blocked a French-led proposal that would have automatically branded the island a tax haven. Territories with a zero per cent corporate tax rate, such as Bermuda and the Cayman Islands, would have been denounced as potentially “non-co-operative”...

Anti-terrorism tactics should be applied to tax havens, report says

The same aggressive and uncompromising international effort used to combat terrorism must be employed to eliminate tax havens, says Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz in a report being released Tuesday. In a copy of the report, obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and shared with the Star, Stiglitz...

Brussels aims to harmonise corporate tax by 2021

The European Commission has unveiled its latest plan to harmonise corporate tax. After two past failures, the executive hopes the recent flurry of tax scandals will give the project a new lease of life. The EU has revived its tax crusade with a new attempt to establish a Common Consolidated...

Ireland braced for new EU corporate tax plan

A new EU corporate tax proposal could fundamentally change how multinationals pay their tax bills in Ireland. It comes at a sensitive time for the State, following so closely after the commission ruled phone giant Apple tapped illegal tax breaks worth around €13bn. In proposals to be unveiled tomorrow, the...

Civil Society proposes to step up measures to fight money laundering and terrorist financing

EESC debate also calls for safeguards against misuse of data collected An EESC debate this week on fighting money laundering, terrorist financing and tax evasion called for a number of policy proposals aimed at “making the lives of criminals more difficult and their actions impossible”. The Brussels event made a...

EU to black list tax havens, EU Commissioner Moscovisi says

A list on non-cooperative tax jurisdictions around the world, the first ever common EU list, is being under preparation, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs Pierre Moscovici has said. “This month, we started the process that will lead, by the end of 2017, to the first ever...

European Parliament Begins Panama Papers Probe Despite Tax Haven Splits

Members of the European Parliament, September 27, have begun their investigation into the Panama Papers scandal, which exposed the sheer extent of rich people and companies using offshore tax havens to reduce their tax liabilities in EU member states. However, the latest probe comes on the back of another investigation...

OECD official says EU Apple ruling not precedent for future tax cases

A multi-billion euro back tax bill handed to Apple by the European Commission should not be seen as a precedent for future tax cases as it was based on state aid rather than tax law, the OECD official spearheading global tax reform said on Monday. European Union antitrust regulators last...

EU Commission names countries that may need tax avoidance screening

The European Commission published on Thursday a list of 81 countries and jurisdictions that have a higher chance of facilitating tax avoidance and may be subject to further screening and even sanctions if all EU states agree. The “scoreboard” is the first step in a process that should be concluded...

UK overseas territories could be affected by EU tax crackdown

Eight British overseas territories and crown dependencies, including Jersey, the British Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands, could face EU economic sanctions after Brussels identified them as having low or no corporation tax. Experts have published a scorecard showing red flag warnings set against a list of the 81 countries that...

Luxembourg may be focus of another Brussels tax inquiry

After state aid inquiries into Amazon and McDonald’s, EU looks again at Luxembourg The European Commission may open a fresh investigation into tax rulings offered by Luxembourg as early as this week, as EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager continues her clampdown against corporate tax avoidance. Luxembourg is already awaiting a...

Ireland risks being trampled in US/EU corporate tax fight

For the last three years, the international debate on tax policy was all about consensus. Led by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, countries across the globe agreed that aggressive tax planning by multinational corporations which pushed profits into low-tax countries – or indeed took profits outside the charge...

By singling out Apple over taxes, Brussels is abusing its own rules

Under EU rules it is illegal for countries to give financial help to some companies and not others in a way that distorts fair competition, writes Liza Lovdahl Gormsen. State aid rules were originally designed to protect the internal EU market and avoid retaliation among member states. The US Treasury,...

‘Tax avoidance’ masters revealed: EXCLUSIVE

The “Big Four” global accounting firms – PwC, Deloitte, KPMG and Ernst & Young – are the masterminds of multinational tax avoidance and the architects of tax schemes which cost governments and their taxpayers an estimated $US1 trillion a year, according to an Australian taxation expert. The controversial new claims...

EU agrees anti-tax evasion deal

Brussels (AFP) – The European Union agreed a raft of anti-tax evasion measures Tuesday that would make it harder for multinationals to shift profits to countries with lower taxes, but critics said they were too watered down. The proposals were agreed on provisionally by the EU’s 28 finance ministers on...

Irish corporate tax regime attacked in EU debate

Sinn Fein’s Matt Carthy has launched a stinging attack on Ireland’s corporate tax regime, arguing that Ireland’s reputation as an “enabler of massive tax avoidance for large corporations” is justified. Addressing the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Tuesday, the Midlands-North West MEP criticised the last government’s move to abolish the...

Ireland delays EU corporate tax deal

Ireland has helped delay an EU deal on corporate tax-dodging over fears it could harm the economy. Finance Minister Michael Noonan told his EU counterparts in Brussels he would not sign up to the deal because it affects Ireland’s sovereign right to set tax rates. “We want to make sure...

Exclusive: EU aims to rule on Amazon’s Luxembourg tax deal by July – sources

BRUSSELS – EU state aid regulators aim to rule on Amazon’s (AMZN.O) tax deal with Luxembourg by July, two people familiar with the matter said on Thursday, and it may order the country’s tax authorities to recover about 400 million euros ($448 million) in back taxes. The European Commission’s decision...

US should be added to tax haven blacklist, says EU report

Tensions between the EU and the US over tax follow investigations into Apple in Ireland The US should be added to a new European blacklist of tax havens being drawn up by the European Commission, according to a report commissioned by the Green group in the European Parliament. The report,...

Tax tensions between the US and Europe hit new high

In the final session of the two day Global Tax Conference at Dublin Castle yesterday, a senior Canadian tax advisor used the analogy of children playing football to describe the relationship between multinationals and government when it comes to tax. In a kids football match, he said, when the ball...

Where next for Corporation Tax?

The amount of tax multinational companies pay – and the amount they don’t pay – has become highly controversial, writes RTÉ’s Economics Correspondent Sean Whelan. This is mainly as a result of public outrage over legal tax avoidance schemes that big companies can use to shelter vast amounts of money...

EU sharpens focus on tax of multinationals

EU countries will exchange information on the tax affairs of multinational companies under new rules backed by EU finance ministers aimed at stopping big companies avoiding paying their fair share into government coffers. The rules, that should take effect later this year, are a response to growing concerns about corporate...

Forget Panama, try Belgium for a cozy tax deal

The European Commission has concluded that selective tax advantages granted by Belgium under its ‘excess profit’ tax scheme are illegal under EU state aid rules. The European Commission is looking at Member States to assess compliance with EU state aid rules in the context of aggressive tax planning by multinationals,...

Election is the calm in the storm of maintaining a competitive corporate tax regime

When Tim Cook and his two senior Apple colleagues were questioned by a US Senate sub-committee back in May 2013, the headlines generated in the world’s business press were unsettling. Some lawmakers repeatedly characterised Ireland as a tax haven, saying behemoth Apple channelled billions of dollars of global revenues generated...

Brussels’ Corporate Tax Plan Falls Short of Reforms Needed

European Commission’s tax avoidance plan announced last week includes positives, like country-by-country reporting, but doesn’t go far enough to turn the tide against corporate tax dodging; Such reporting should be made public The European Commission last week announced proposals for new laws to tackle tax avoidance and evasion in the...

Government ‘lobbying to protect Google’s £30bn tax haven in Bermuda’

European officials have been urged by the British government to remove Bermuda – a tax haven used by Google – from an official blacklist, according to reports. The behind-the-scenes lobbying by UK Treasury ministers involved a memo circulated among Tory MEPs in Brussels describing the sanctions against tax havens as...

EU Seeks Broader Crackdown On Corporate Tax Loopholes

BRUSSELS (Alliance News) – The EU stepped up the fight against corporate tax avoidance Thursday, unveiling proposals including an EU-wide blacklist of international tax havens, as part of a wider clampdown on firms using loopholes to reduce their tax bills. The EU’s executive estimates that member states are deprived of...

Europe cracks down on tax dodgers

Directive follows a series of high-profile tax cases involving Google, Apple and others. Rampant corporate tax dodging and sweetheart deals that cheat governments and skew markets, have prompted the European Commission to unveil a new directive Thursday. The proposed legislation follows a quick succession of tax rulings, settlements and investigations...

Belgium asked to recover $760 million in illegal tax breaks

The beneficiaries included Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, BP Plc, BASF SE, Proximus SA, Atlas Copco AB, Wabco Holdings, and Celio France SAS. proximus SE This estimate does not include any benefits associated with a successful appeal of the decision, nor does it reflect guidance we expect to receive from the Belgian...

Dutch say will lead EU fight against multinationals’ tax avoidance

The Netherlands will be at the forefront of efforts to combat multinationals’ tax avoidance, its finance minister has said. The comments come amid a dispute with the European Commission over his country’s tax treatment of Starbucks. The Commission, the EU’s executive arm, will propose a new set of binding rules...