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Gibraltar Meets With New EU Tax Ruling Commitee

by Jason Gorringe,, London

01 June 2015

Gibraltar's Chief Minister, Fabian Picardo, has met with the new TAXE committee of the European Parliament and defended the territory's tax ruling regime.

The TAXE Committee was established earlier this year in the wake of the leak of confidential tax rulings provided by EU member states to certain multinationals. The TAXE Committee's probe, sanctioned by members of the European Parliament, is taking place alongside the European Commission's investigations into potential illegitimate state aid granted as part of those rulings, and of member states' tax ruling practices in general.

With respect to the tax ruling practices of member states, the Committee has recently sought the following information from member states: action taken or planned at national level to increase transparency in the area of corporate taxation and to limit corporate tax base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS); an overview of all tax rulings issued since 1991, including the date of the ruling and the name of the recipient company; a list of current international tax treaties that have the effect of reducing effective corporate tax rates; and the staffing levels of local and national tax authorities that deal with corporate tax matters.

The Commission is reviewing the territory's tax ruling regime under the EU Code of Conduct for Business Taxation.

According to a statement released by the Government, the meeting lasted just over an hour and took place at the request of the Gibraltar Government. Picardo was accompanied by Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Garcia and Attorney General Michael Llamas.

Picardo answered questions put to him by the spokesmen of the various political groups. These questions centered on Gibraltar's constitutional position in relation to the United Kingdom and its relationship with the European Union.

Picardo took the opportunity to explain Gibraltar's exemplary record in the transposition of EU Directives on financial services and discussed the tax information exchange agreements and equivalent arrangements that are already in place. He told the Committee that Gibraltar is a compliant jurisdiction which is fully open and transparent.

The Chairman of the Committee, Alain Lamassoure, a member of the European Parliament, thanked the Chief Minister for what he called his "helpful, informative, and useful intervention" and emphasized that Gibraltar had attended the TAXE Committee at its own request to voluntarily engage with them on the subjects they are focusing on.

TAGS: tax | investment | European Commission | Gibraltar | financial services | international financial centres (IFC) | Luxembourg | United Kingdom | offshore | agreements | multinationals | transfer pricing | Switzerland | services | Europe | Tax

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