Calendar of Events
Have a question to ask?
Subscribe for Updates
Photo and Video Gallery
Rate this page
Future of Europe
Which of the 5 scenarios proposed would you choose?
  • Carrying On
  • Nothing but the Single Market
  • Those Who Want More Do More
  • Doing Less More Efficiently
  • Doing Much More Together
Vote
Show Results
  • Creative Europe Project
    The Department of Haute-Loire is looking for three European partners to parti...
    25 August 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • White paper on the futur
    White paper on the future of Europe...
    27 July 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • The EU's response to the
    One of our student interns produced this well-written article about the ongoi...
    20 February 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • The importance of labour
    This article, written by a student at the University of Malta, passionately c...
    20 February 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Strengthened EU-Swiss Re
    The EU enjoys very close relations with Switzerland in every sense: culturall...
    29 December 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • A boost for the European
    The European Commission is stepping up its efforts to develop a strong space ...
    26 October 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • EU increasing support fo
    The EU has announced that it shall implement new aid programmes in the Latin ...
    26 October 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Commission proposes EU c
    Delivering on the Security Union: Commission proposes EU certification system...
    07 September 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • VAT Gap: Nearly €160 bil
    A staggering €159.5 billion in Value Added Tax revenues were lost across the ...
    06 September 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Variable attitudes towar
    Performance-related pay and employee reward systems in Europe are often uneve...
    01 September 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • EU's 2017 budget: Parlia
    The EU's budget for next year will be decided over the coming months. Startin...
    30 August 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Commission proposes 2018
    The Commission is also seeking to highlight the role of Europe's cultural her...
    30 August 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
< Back to News
The Commission sets out next steps to increase tax transparency and tackle tax abuse
05 July 2016

These revelations exposed how secret companies and accounts can be used to hide income and assets offshore, often for tax evasion and other illicit purposes. Important progress has already been made at EU level to tackle such practices, including new rules to block artificial tax arrangements and transparency requirements for financial accounts tax rulings andmultinational´s activities. However, there are still gaps in the tax framework that need to be addressed in order to prevent tax abuse and illicit financial flows.

In parallel to today's proposal to amend the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive, the Commission is also presenting a Communication setting out priorities for our work towards fairer, more transparent and more effective taxation.

Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis, responsible for the Euro and Social Dialogue, said: "Tax avoidance can cost the public purse many millions of euros each year. Understandably, people and businesses want tax to be fairer and more effective. To do so, we are working together at European level to make the system more transparent, making it difficult for potential tax evaders to move profits elsewhere. The Panama Papers scandal helped to focus minds and speed up this work."

Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs, said: "The recent leaks exposed loopholes that still allow tax evaders to hide funds offshore. These loopholes must be closed and our measures to stamp out tax abuse must be intensified. The Commission is determined to inject more openness and more trust into taxation. We have already come a long way and now is the time to go further. The EU's tax transparency campaign continues."

Key actions include:

Providing tax authorities with the information they need: In order to spot tax evaders, tax authorities must know the ultimate beneficiary behind every company, trust and fund. However, this information is not always currently available to Member States' tax authorities throughout the EU. The Commission has today proposed that tax authorities should have access to national anti-money laundering information, particularly beneficial ownership and due diligence information. This legislative proposal takes the form of an amendment to the Directive on Administrative Cooperation in the field of taxation.

Extending the information available to authorities: The Commission has proposed that existing, as well as new, accounts should be subject to due diligence controls. This will prevent accounts that are potentially used for illicit activities from escaping detection. Passive companies and trusts, such as those highlighted in the Panama Papers, will also be subject to greater scrutiny and tighter rules. These proposed amendments to the Anti Money Laundering Directive should be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council under the ordinary legislative procedure.

Increasing cross-border transparency on beneficial ownership: Given the international nature of tax evasion and avoidance, tax transparency must also extend across borders. The Commission will examine how Member States could automatically exchange their national information on beneficial owners of companies and trusts with a potential tax impact.

Improving oversight of tax advisors' activities: It is now clear that certain tax advisors and financial intermediaries have played a central role in facilitating tax evasion. The Commission will examine how to shed more light on tax advisors' activities and create effective disincentives for those that promote and enable aggressive tax planning.

Promoting tax good governance worldwide and tackling uncooperative tax jurisdictions:The EU has a number of tools at its disposal to promote tax good governance worldwide, such as agreements with third countries and development assistance. Member States have already endorsed the idea of establishing an EU list of third countries that do not respect tax good governance standards, as set out by the Commission in its External Strategy for Effective Taxation. The preparatory work on this list is expected to have a strong dissuasive effect on third countries that actively encourage abusive tax practices or refuse to respect international good governance standards. The Commission is now working with the Council's Code of Conduct Group to identify the most relevant countries to screen under this process, in order to have a first EU list ready in 2017.

Protecting whistle-blowers: Many cases of tax evasion and avoidance have recently come to light thanks to the actions of whistle-blowers.The European Parliament and other civil society groups have called for stronger measures to protect those that expose such wrong-doing in the public interest. Current EU law contains protection of whistle-blowers in sectorial legislation, for example on market abuse. The Commission will assess the need for horizontal or additional sectorial measures in order to increase the protection of whistle-blowers.

Next Steps

The proposal for access to information for tax authorities (an amendment to the Directive on Administrative Cooperation for Taxation) will be submitted to the European Parliament for consultation and to the Council for adoption. The proposed amendments to the Anti Money Laundering Directive should be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council as co-legislators. The Commission will take forward the measures set out in the Communication over the coming months and will determine the most appropriate EU level action to take on each of them.


  • Creative Europe Project ...
    The Department of Haute-Loire is looking for three European partners to parti...
    25 August 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • White paper on the futur...
    White paper on the future of Europe...
    27 July 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • The EU's response to the...
    One of our student interns produced this well-written article about the ongoi...
    20 February 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • The importance of labour...
    This article, written by a student at the University of Malta, passionately c...
    20 February 2017
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Strengthened EU-Swiss Re...
    The EU enjoys very close relations with Switzerland in every sense: culturall...
    29 December 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • A boost for the European...
    The European Commission is stepping up its efforts to develop a strong space ...
    26 October 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • EU increasing support fo...
    The EU has announced that it shall implement new aid programmes in the Latin ...
    26 October 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Commission proposes EU c...
    Delivering on the Security Union: Commission proposes EU certification system...
    07 September 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • VAT Gap: Nearly €160 bil...
    A staggering €159.5 billion in Value Added Tax revenues were lost across the ...
    06 September 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Variable attitudes towar...
    Performance-related pay and employee reward systems in Europe are often uneve...
    01 September 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • EU's 2017 budget: Parlia...
    The EU's budget for next year will be decided over the coming months. Startin...
    30 August 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
  • Commission proposes 2018...
    The Commission is also seeking to highlight the role of Europe's cultural her...
    30 August 2016
    read more...
    Europe Direct Valletta
Valletta
The EUROPE DIRECT network is one of the Commission’s main tools to offer information to citizens at local level and to gather citizens` feedback for the European Institutions. EDICs are a direct entry point to the Union for the citizens, offering general EU information, referring to specialised information sources, raising awareness and promoting debate.
read more...
Copyright © 2013 GRTU | Terms Of Use | Privacy Policy | Sitemap
Website By 
Co-funded by the European Union