EUROPEAN COMMISSION PROPOSES MAJOR CORPORATE TAX REFORM FOR THE EU

The European Commission has today announced plans to overhaul the way in which companies are taxed in the Single Market, delivering a growth-friendly and fair corporate tax system.

Re‑calibrated as part of a broader package of corporate tax reforms, the Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB) will make it easier and cheaper to do business in the Single Market and will act as a powerful tool against tax avoidance.

First tabled in 2011, the CCCTB was designed to strengthen the Single Market for businesses. While Member States made considerable progress on many core elements of the previous CCCTB proposal, they were unable to reach a final agreement. Having sought the views of Member States, businesses, civil society and the European Parliament, we are today bolstering the pro-business elements of the previous proposal to help cross-border companies cut costs, red tape and to support innovation. The re-launched CCCTB will also create a level-playing field for multinationals in Europe by closing off avenues used for tax avoidance.

Two further proposals aim to improve the current system for dispute resolution on double taxation in the EU and to bolster existing anti-abuse rules. Taken together, these measures will create a simple and pro-business tax environment.

Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis said: "Tax policy should support the EU's goals of economic growth and social justice. Today's proposals aim to boost growth and investment, support enterprise and ensure fairness. The current corporate tax system treats debt financing of companies more favourably than equity financing. Reducing this debt-equity bias in the tax system is an important element of the Capital Markets Union Action Plan and underlines our commitment to deliver on this project."

Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs said: "With the rebooted CCCTB proposal, we're addressing the concerns of both businesses and citizens in one fell swoop. The many conversations I've had as Taxation Commissioner have made it crystal-clear to me that companies need simpler tax rules within the EU. At the same time, we need to drive forward our fight against tax avoidance, which is delivering real change. Finance Ministers should look at this ambitious and timely package with a fresh pair of eyes because it will create a robust tax system fit for the 21st century.”

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