Dangers for Ireland now as EU pushes for harmonisation of corporate tax policies – Hayes
Fine Gael Dublin MEP and member of ECON, Brian Hayes, today confirmed his opposition and that of the Fine Gael MEP group to the final report of the European Parliament’s TAX II Committee, saying that this represents a further EU push for tax harmonisation.
“At a time when the UK government is planning to reduce their corporate tax, it is not in Ireland’s interest that the European Parliament reheats once again their ambition for corporate tax harmonisation. That’s bad for Ireland, bad for the EU and bad for business certainly. Brexit has introduced more uncertainty for the Irish economy. We in Ireland need to stay competitive, create new business opportunities and make it clear that our future remains in the EU and in the Eurozone. We need to remain firm on corporate tax.
“Now is not the time to push for corporate tax consolidation across the EU. Ireland must continue to work within the EU and in the OECD to tackle aggressive tax planning. But that must not mean that we move to a common EU corporate tax rate or consolidation of the EU tax code. This violates the right of Member States to set their own tax rates; this is a violation of tax sovereignty.
“This is the second such special Tax Committee that the European Parliament has set up. Along with the European Commission, the Parliament will continue to pursue this agenda that encroaches on Member States tax sovereignty. It is more important now than ever that EU institutions respect the critical importance of Member State sovereignty given the outcome of the UK referendum.
“This final tax report includes several harmful positions such as calling for Member States to renegotiate their bilateral tax treaties in favour of EU wide tax treaties. It recommends the swift introduction of a mandatory CCCTB and calls for Member States to remove differences in their corporate tax systems. It also calls for a minimum effective taxation clause to be introduced in different Directives; this sets a bad precedent of harmonising tax rates through the back door.”