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The EU finalizes its list of tax havens between demands of more ambition

The countries of the European Union (EU) finalize the elaboration of their black list of tax havens, which they will approve in the Council of Economic and Financial Affairs next Tuesday, while NGOs and MEPs today asked them for more ambition in the face of the scandals linked to these opaque territories.

Brussels, Nov 28 (EFE). - The countries of the European Union (EU) finalize the elaboration of their black list of tax havens, which they will approve in the Council of Economic and Financial Affairs of the next Tuesday, while NGOs and MEPs today asked them more ambition in the face of the scandals linked to these opaque territories.

The list of third jurisdictions that do not cooperate in The fiscal area, as it is officially called, is the first repertoire of tax havens common to the EU and replaces the national lists that some States had, homogenizing the criteria that determine which countries end up in it.

To make this list, fiscal experts of the Twenty-eight have analyzed since the beginning of the year the fiscal legislation of 92 jurisdictions based on three criteria.

They take into account their level of transparency, whether they guarantee fair taxation or, on the contrary, facilitate the creation of opaque structures, and if they implement the international norms against the erosion of the tax base and the transfer of benefits (BEPS).

The EU has contacted those countries that generated doubts, What has led some to change their laws to adapt to EU standards and to "half" of them to commit to doing so in 2018, according to the European Commissioner of Affairs Economic, Pierre Moscovici, in an appearance in the European Parliament.

These countries will be included in a document that will also be adopted on Tuesday, although it is not clear if it will be public, and the fulfillment of the commitments will be reviewed periodically.

The Twenty-eight are studying introducing sanctions against countries on the list, such as withholding taxes on payments to these jurisdictions, the non-deductibility of the same or new rules on the income of companies controlled from these countries, the bulk of which could be approved on Tuesday.

Publication of this blacklist puts the finishing touch to a process that began in 2015 and has gained relevance to the heat of revelations about the rise of politicians and characters' activities public in these tax havens, such as the "Panama papers" or the more recent "roles of paradise".

The European Commission, which has assisted in the preparation of the list but stresses that it depends entirely on the states, believes that the initiative demonstrates the progress made by the EU in the last two years in terms of transparency and good fiscal governance, with new laws and with investigations of its Competition department that have punished the bad practices of multinationals like Apple or Amazon.

However, some organizations criticize that the list does not include the members of the European Union themselves.

According to a report published today by Oxfam, which claims to have made the analysis of 92 countries plus the 28 members of the EU according to the criteria to enter the "black list", it should contain 35 States, including EU, Luxembourg, Ireland, Malta and the Netherlands.

The Commission defended today through a spokesperson that "all members of the EU fully meet the criteria" that are required of third parties and assured that the interpretation made by the organization "goes much further beyond the internationally recognized standards. "

The group of the Greens in the Eurocámara joined the criticism and asked" that the EU recognize its own tax havens "and, in particular, Gibraltar and other British territories.

"Given the staggering number of tax scandals revealed in recent years, it is important that the EU establish a list forceful and credible, "said the Spanish MEP Ernest Urtasun, who asked the ministers" to be objective over political considerations ".

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