Weekly Tax News – 25 March 2019

ETAF Tax Conference “Future Trends of Taxation” on 20 March 2019

On 20 March 2019, over 90 participants from the EU institutions, multiple Member States and several organisations joined the Conference on "Future Trends of Taxation" hosted by the European Tax Adviser Federation (ETAF) in Brussels. Main subjects of the Conference were the shift away from unanimity principle in taxation matters, the electoral programmes of the different political groups and the possible impacts of Brexit on EU tax policy.

European Parliament and Council agreed on Fiscalis programme

On 21 March, Members of the European Parliament and representatives of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU reached a political agreement in principle on the 'Fiscalis' programme for the 2021–2027 period. The programme will support cooperation between Member States' tax administrations and better contribute to the fight against tax fraud, tax evasion and tax avoidance. This provisional agreement has to be formally approved by both the European Parliament and the Council, while the budgetary aspects still need to be settled during the horizontal negotiations on the multiannual financial framework for 2021–2027.

Prof. Joseph Stiglitz takes position on EU tax framework

On 21 March, Prof. Joseph Stiglitz (Nobel Laureate in Economics) held a keynote speech to present his report “Rewriting the rules of the European economy” during an event organised by the Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS) in Brussels. Amongst other topics, the report highlights “the fundamental mistake that the EU made in not paying sufficient attention to tax harmonization when it created the Single Market”, with the result of allowing tax competition between EU Member States. In the course of the event, Pierre Moscovici (European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs) stressed once again that the EU should shift towards qualified majority voting in taxation matters, whilst Jeppe Kofod (Member of the European Parliament, S&D, Denmark) highlighted the necessity to stop the presence of EU tax havens.