A step forward in the fight against tax avoidance but more needs to be done, say S&Ds

#TaxJustice, Tax transparency: Liberals and Conservatives side with big business against interests of EU citizens, Evelyn Regner and Hugues Bayet, country-by country reporting,

S&D MEPs today welcomed the agreement reached by the EU finance ministers on new rules to fight tax avoidance by big multinationals as a "step forward".

The European Parliament’s rapporteur, Belgian socialist Hugues Bayet MEP, said:

"On June 8, the European Parliament had sent a clear signal to EU governments by adopting ambitious measures to tackle tax avoidance by big companies. The governments have understood the need to put an end to a two-speed Europe which offers the possibility for the most powerful companies to avoid tax. Taxes will now have to be paid where profits are generated.

"But more needs to be done to ensure that all the loopholes in our tax system are closed. Member states have actually watered down the original proposals of the European Commission and the recommendations of the European Parliament. In the short term, new proposals will be necessary. We are also calling for an assessment of the rules that have been adopted to make sure of their efficiency.

"Since the Luxleaks, and Swiss leaks revelations, the European Parliament has become a major actor in the fight for tax justice in Europe. As socialists and democrats, we will keep up the fight to end these abusive and harmful tax practices across Europe which deprive governments of billions of euros in revenues every year."

S&D Group spokeswoman on economic and monetary affairs Pervenche Berès MEP added:

"The measures approved by the European finance ministers will be a first step to make a real difference. Companies which do business in Europe will have to show solidarity and pay their fair share of taxes, like all small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and citizens."