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Friday, 18 December 2009

EU to impose tax on multinationals

The European Union is considering imposing a tax on multinational corporations which shirk their tax responsibilities in developing countries while hiding their profits away in secrecy jurisdictions/tax havens. EU Development Commissioner Karel De Gucht suggested last week a tax in Europe for multinationals operating in developing nations but squirrelling profits off to tax havens. "We must take our responsibilities regarding multinationals based in Europe with activities in the developing world and not consider that financial transfer to tax havens have been duly taxed", De Gucht told a good governance conference at the European Parliament in Brussels. Asked for details, he said that Europeans should find a system to allow them to raise considerable funds for development aid. Currently tax evasion is "at least three times bigger than development aid", he added. Funds collected from such companies could be used as development aid. Tax evasion is "a real development problem", he said, before calling for tax reform in developing nations. "Helping developing countries to strengthen their tax systems and to raise more tax revenues is not just a new theme or the new fashion in the development agenda. It is in fact an essential key to sustainable development and to enhance ownership of poverty reduction policies".

Source: Financial Taskforce