Hayes welcomes Donohoe’s comments on offshore tax clampdown
Brian Hayes MEP today (Tuesday) welcomed remarks made by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe in the European Parliament’s Panama Papers (PANA) Committee about Ireland’s efforts to clampdown on tax avoidance schemes following the Panama papers leaks.
“As we all know, offshore tax schemes, designed by tax advisors, is something that leads to losses for all Member States’ tax revenues. This was so clearly brought to light by the Panama papers with the shocking revelations of tax avoidance.
“Minister Donohoe came before the European Parliament’s temporary committee investigating the Panama Papers leaks, to set out Ireland’s position on this issue. He said that following the revelations, taxpayers in Ireland were given until 4 May 2017 to make voluntary disclosures about offshore tax arrangements they have used. Minister Donohoe confirmed that number of disclosures made before 4 May exceed 2,500 and constitute a value of over €70 million.
“Those that failed to come forward face penalties, publication of their names and possible prosecution. This no-nonsense approach to tax avoidance is exactly what is needed and Ireland is clearly demonstrating that it is playing its part to clampdown on large-scale global tax avoidance.
“It is also welcome that Minister Donohoe confirmed that the OECD BEPS guidelines were have an important impact on our tax take. Irish Corporation tax revenue has doubled between 2011 and 2016 and much of this is because we are closing down tax loopholes by way of our implementation of the OECD tax agenda.
“The PANA Committee was set up in the wake of the Panama papers scandal revealed information about the secret offshore companies used to hide wealth and evade taxes. The revelations demonstrated an organised web of financial secrecy which should not be tolerated.”