S&D Euro MPs are calling on their colleagues from the Liberal and Conservative groups to back their efforts to ensure greater corporate tax transparency in Europe ahead of a crucial vote in the European Parliament later today.
While a compromise agreement on so-called 'public country-by-country legislation' is on the table, some EPP and ALDE members are trying to undermine it.
S&D Group negotiators for the country-by-country reporting (CBCR) file, Evelyn Regner and Hugues Bayet, stated:
"The purpose of this law is very clear: we want to increase corporate transparency by enabling citizens and civil-society organisations worldwide to follow the money. The proposal will ensure that taxes are paid where profits are made, helping to provide adequate revenue for public services and benefiting the wider economy.
"We have introduced a safeguard clause to protect the interests of companies, for example when they are penetrating a new market. According to the compromise, companies could be exempt for two years – with the possibility of one further two-year renewal – from the obligation on disclosing information if the information is considered too sensitive. But the EPP is now trying to get an unlimited exemption. This is unacceptable.
"Transparency is the key to fighting tax evasion and profit shifting. It's a matter of creating a level playing field between big companies and small businesses, and a matter of fairness for all taxpayers.
"The Liberals and Conservatives need to decide if they are on the side of European citizens or the side of big business. As Socialists and Democrats we know where we stand."