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Ceturtdiena 22.03.2018 | Name days: Tamāra, Dziedra

EP representatives call to provide sanctions for using tax paradise services

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUThe European Commission and member states should put more effort into combating tax avoidance and money laundering schemes, emphasized MEPs during debates on the recent Panama offshore scandal – the leak of information about 200,000 offshore companies and their secret owners.

European People’s Party’s Group requested representatives of Mossack Fonseca, whose documents were leaked, and the Panama government to attend debates of the European Parliament’s tax committee, as confirmed by EP Parliamentary press-secretary in Latvia Signe Znotina-Znota.

Other political groups represented in the European Parliament called for the creation of a European blacklist that would include tax paradises and provide sanctions for using services of such offshore companies. Authors of this idea also urged EU member states to agree with transparency proposals.

European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs Pierre Moscovici expressed hope that the Panama offshore scandal will serve as an alarm that will bring positive change. He urged EU member states to demonstrate commitment to combat tax avoidance and tax fraud schemes, prevent aggressive tax planning and money laundering activities. He especially pointed to the need to determine true owners of problematic companies – this requirement is added to the directive for combating money laundering activities. He also urged member states to support transparency initiatives.

Dutch Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert noted that her represented EU Council presidency tries to speed up decision-making processes in relation to proposals for increased tax transparency.

The directive requires specific amendments in order to secure authorities access to bank account information and the world of virtual currencies, she said, adding that she expects the commission to provide a list of tax jurisdictions that refuse to cooperate by May 2016.


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