Molly, who is a member of the European Parliament’s inquiry committee on the Panama Papers, has welcomed a new report from Oxfam, that identifies which countries should be on an EU tax haven blacklist. The report comes ahead of next week’s meeting of the Economic and Financial Affairs Council (ECOFIN) which will agree the EU’s official tax havens blacklist. While the EU will look only at countries outside the EU, Oxfam has applied the EU’s own methodology to identify tax havens within Europe. Dr Scott Cato said:
“It defies logic and credibility that the tax haven blacklist will fail to include countries in Europe. Oxfam’s research shows that Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta and the Netherlands all meet the EU’s own tax haven criteria. There’s also another tax dodging elephant in the room: the UK which uses its network of UK crown dependencies and overseas territories to do the dirty work. This is why the worst EU offenders feature in Oxfam’s list of global tax offenders, yet will not be blacklisted by the EU.
Molly Scott Cato said that the EU should use the opportunity of leaving the EU to force the UK to end its tax dodging activities:
“Once we leave the EU, the UK will no longer be able to use the EU to hide their dodgy tax practices. The EU should use the opportunity of Brexit to blacklist the UKs overseas territories and force the government to end their poisonous tax secrecy. The EU needs to be clear that it will not sign a free trade agreement with the UK until its cleans up its act on tax.”