European Parliament must vote for corporate tax transparency measure

Lucinda Pearson
30 June, 2017

On Tuesday 4 July 2017, the European Parliament will debate and vote on a key measure to increase corporate tax transparency, also known as “public country-by-country reporting” (CBCR).

This legislation, if adopted, will provide society at large with information about multinationals’ activities and tax payments, shed a light on their profit shifting techniques as well as deter them from engaging in aggressive tax planning schemes. Public scrutiny of this information will allow public debate about the tax strategies of large multinationals, as well as improve corporate accountability and transparency.

We at Transparency International EU have been following the legislative process from the beginning and welcome the widespread support in the European Parliament for the basic principle of transparency over multinational firms’ tax payments.

We remain concerned, however, by a ‘get out clause’ introduced by Members of the European Parliament during the vote in Committee that would undermine transparency and perpetuate corporate secrecy.

Ahead of the European Parliament’s final vote in plenary, we and 45 civil society and trade union organisations have sent letters to the Chairs of all political groups in the European Parliament urging them to vote in favour of the draft legislation as well as limit the ‘get out clause’ for multinationals.

All the letters are publicly available below.

Letter to Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament

Letter to Manfred Weber, Chair of the European People’s Party (EPP)

Letter to Gianni Pittella, Chair of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D)

Letter to Syed Kamall, Chair of the Europen Conservatives and Reformists Group (ECR)

Letter to Guy Verhofstadt, Chair of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE)

Letter to Gabriele Zimmer, Chair of the European United Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL)

Letter to Nigel Farage, Chair of the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy Group (EFDD)

Letter to Franziska Keller and Philippe Lamberts, Co-Chairs of the Greens/European Free Allliance (EFA)