On 12 December, the European Parliament will vote on the final Panama Papers report and its recommendations. Thanks to the Greens/EFA group, the report contains many important findings and tools to tackle money laundering and tax dodging.
We want this report to become a victory for tax justice and we are calling on the EU member states and the European Commission to take action. However, conservative forces in the European Parliament want to water down the report and delete some of its most important recommendations.
Join our Twitter action and tweet to your politicians in the EU Parliament to help prevent the weakening of the Panama Papers report. Help us make it a victory for tax justice!
Here is the list of the seven key recommendations that are in danger and that we need to protect:
- Companies must justify why offshore - every company should be obliged to provide the competent authorities with an economic reason as to why it is creating an offshore structure.
- Ensure that no EU funds contribute to tax avoidance and tax fraud - the European Commission should publish an annual report on the use of EU funds, as well as on the money transfers to offshore structures by the European Investment Bank and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. This report should include the number and nature of projects blocked, as well as explanatory comments on the rationale for blocking projects. Follow-up actions should be taken to ensure that no EU funds directly or indirectly contribute to tax avoidance and tax fraud.
- Prohibit EU funding for companies using tax havens - the aim is to prohibit EU funding for ultimate beneficiaries or financial intermediaries proven to be involved in tax evasion or aggressive tax planning.
- Put an end to self-regulation - the European Commission should present a legislative proposal in 2018 that prohibits the self-regulation of so-called obliged entities, in accordance with the Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD).
- Enforce the Capital Requirements Directive - the European Commission needs to investigate whether the competent authorities in the member states have complied with the licensing procedures for intermediaries. This is not always the case currently.
- Propose new tax legislation giving the European Parliament full power to decide - make a new tax proposal via co-decision, under Article 116 TFEU, by mid-2018 if the member states have not adopted a reform of the mandate of the Code of Conduct Group by then.
- Create a permanent inquiry committee - such an inquiry committee should be based on the model of the US Congress.