EP approves position on VAT rates reform via quick procedure
The European Parliament’s (EP) Plenary approved on 9 March its position, prepared by MEP Marek Belka (S&D/Poland), on EU VAT rates reform. The position was adopted by an impressive majority of 612 votes in favour, 14 against and 71 abstentions.
In December 2021, the Council reached an agreement on a proposal to update EU rules on VAT rates. Given fundamental differences between the original 2018 EC proposal on which the EP was initially consulted, and the text unanimously agreed in the Council, the latter decided to re-consult the EP.
MEP Belka felt that although not fully in line with the first Parliament opinion, the Council agreement does take some crucial elements proposed by the EP into account.
With the EP’s opinion adopted, the Council agreement can now be implemented into EU law.
See also an information document published by Accountancy Europe outlining the key features of the Council agreement.
EP drafts report on Energy Tax Directive published
The draft report was prepared by MEP Johan Van Overdveldt (ECR/Belgium). Its publication is the Parliament’s first step towards formulating its opinion on the Commission’s initial proposal from 15 July 2021. Although the EP’s opinion is needed for the revised energy taxation Directive (ETD) to eventually become EU law, the Member States in the Council have no obligation to take it into account. A vote in the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) is scheduled for 20 June.
EP adopts position on withholding tax reform
EP’s Plenary voted on the withholding taxation draft report on 10 March, with 625 votes in favour, 38 against and 28 abstentions. The report was prepared by MEP Pedro Marques (S&D/Portugal). It constitutes the Parliament’s formal position ahead of an EC proposal expected for Q4 2022. A public consultation is also expected in the coming days.
Accountancy Europe was delighted to contribute to the EP’s work, with Paul Gisby having provided input both during a public hearing as well as in writing. Read more
And a resolution on a fairer and simpler tax system
On the same day, Plenary also adopted MEP Ludek Niedermayer’s (EPP/Czech Republic) draft report on Fair and simple taxation supporting the recovery strategy. It passed with 476 votes in favour, 78 votes against and 129 abstentions. Read more
EP FISC exchanges views with EU Code of Conduct Group’s Chair
EP Subcommittee on Tax Matters (FISC) held a hearing on 17 March with Lyudmila Petkova, Chair of the Code of Conduct Group (CoCG) on Business Taxation. The debate touched on issues such as the reform of the Group, the list of non-cooperative jurisdictions, taxation of high-net worth individuals and the impact of the Pillar 2 agreement on the work of the Group.
Ms. Petkova highlighted the achievements of the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions so far. More than 140 preferential tax regimes have been abolished, 27 additional countries singed up for OECD cooperation and 13 countries have signed up to the OECD’s base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) framework, she noted.
Speaking about EP’s non-binding tax resolutions, Ms. Petkova said that EU Member States do read them as a lot of what is in them is very useful.
On Pillar 2, she emphasized that work to monitor harmful tax practices will continue even after the Directive’s addition, especially with regard to companies that do not fall under its scope. Ms. Petkova also said that discussions are ongoing to potentially alter the third country listing rules on the basis of Pillar 2. Read more