Europe dragging its feet on tax dodging

Today EU leaders recognised the need to ramp up efforts to combat tax dodging, but failed to agree on a clear pathway to make it happen.  

Natalia Alonso, Head of Oxfam’s EU Office, said:

“We hope EU leaders mean serious business this time. They must deepen their resolve to tackle the scandalous holes in tax policy. Action is needed now to find solutions to a problem which sees up to €700 billion drained from developing countries every year”.

“Big multinationals should be subject to greater scrutiny over who really owns them, where they work and what taxes they pay. This would make them more accountable, and help restore the public trust. As stated by EU leaders today, it is now up to the European Commission to suggest the way forward".

“Europe should remain at the forefront of international efforts to fight tax dodging, leading the charge rather than following it. For starters, the EU must put its own house in order and ensure all countries, including Luxembourg and Austria who are currently blocking progress on automatic exchange of tax information, support bold reforms. EU leaders have set March next year as their new deadline and this must be respected.”

Notes to Editors

Poor countries lose out around €700 billion every year because of illicit financial outflows, mainly in the form of tax dodging by multinational companies, according to a new report by Global Financial Integrity. This is seven times greater than overseas aid provided by donors to poor countries.

Contact information: 

Angela Corbalan on + 32 (0) 473 56 22 60 or angela.corbalan@oxfaminternational.org