| Click for the Finfacts Ireland Portal Homepage |

Finfacts Business News Centre

 Irish Economy
 EU Economy
 US Economy
 UK Economy
 Global Economy
 Asia Economy


How to use our RSS feed

Web Finfacts

See Search Box lower down this column for searches of Finfacts news pages. Where there may be the odd special character missing from an older page, it's a problem that developed when Interactive Tools upgraded to a new content management system.


Finfacts is Ireland's leading business information site and you are in its business news section.

We provide access to live business television and business related videos from: Bloomberg TV; The Wall Street Journal; CNBC and the Financial Times. Click image:


Finfacts Homepage

Irish Share Prices

Euribor Daily Rates

Irish Economy

Global Income Per Capita

Global Cost of Living

Irish Tax 2008

Climate Change Reports

Global News

Bloomberg News

CNN Money

Cnet Tech News


Irish Independent

Irish Times

Irish Examiner

New York Times

Financial Times

Technology News




Content Management by interactivetools.com.

News : EU Economy Last Updated: Apr 24, 2009 - 5:31:05 PM

Germany wins support of EU Finance Ministers for clampdown on tax havens
By Finfacts Team
Mar 5, 2008 - 5:21:42 AM

Email this article
 Printer friendly page

Joaquín Almunia, European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Policy, Slovenian Finance Minister and the President of the Council, Andrej Bajuk, and László Kovács, European Commissioner responsible for Taxation and Customs Union at the press conference after the ECOFIN meeting on March 04, 2008.

Germany won the support of most member countries of the European Union on Tuesday for a clampdown on tax havens.

At the March meeting of Ecofin, comprising the 27 EU finance ministers, the majority of countries supported a proposal  to request the European Commission to bring forward a review of three-year-old legislation that has limited the opportunities for tax evasion.

The German proposal was prompted by the revelation last month that Germany's intelligence service had paid a former employee of Liechtenstein's biggest bank, €4.2 million for a DVD containing details on 1,400 apparent tax evaders with almost half of them resident in Germany.  

Peer Steinbrück, the German Finance Minister, said that the revelation that hundreds of Germans were hiding large amounts of money in the Alpine tax haven, offered "spectacular cases of tax fraud" that were not merely a scam but "a social and moral issue".

The European Commission has been looking at ways to clamp down on tax evasion in non-EU territories such as Hong Kong and Macao but the European tax havens of Andorra, Liechtenstein and Monaco have moved to centre stage in recent weeks.

The Commission is expected to put forward proposals for amending the 2005 directive, with a view to closing loopholes that have remained open.

It has been suggested that the EU rules could be expanded to cover not only interest payments on cash savings but capital gains, dividends and other returns on assets. László Kovács, EU tax commissioner, has also suggested that the rules cover investment vehicles such as trusts, which some national tax authorities say are being exploited for tax evasion purposes.

 Only Austria and Luxembourg, which obtained special arrangements when an EU savings tax directive came into effect in 2005, were lukewarm about the Ecofin proposal on Tuesday.

 "We need clear pressure on Liechtenstein to provide more information to make sure people are not acting illegally to evade their tax obligations,"said a UK Treasury spokesman was reported as saying.

“I’m looking forward to many years of fascinating and fundamental discussions,” diplomats quoted Jean-Claude Juncker, Prime Minister of Luxembourg as saying. The Duchy has an international financial centre.

Austrian officials also defended the status quo, saying their country did not practice banking secrecy when it came to criminal matters.



In other news from the Ecofin meeting, an interim report to the European Council, from the Finance Ministers pointed out that conditions in the international financial system remain unstable. Although substantial adjustments have already taken place, further write-offs can be expected for the final quarter of 2007.

The report said that despite the credit crunch, however, the volume of loans available to the corporate sector has not been affected. Several successive years of improved profitability have left most EU banks in a strong financial position, enabling them to handle shocks. Ministers said that in an environment of constant financial innovations, which pose new challenges for financial supervision at national, EU and world level, the prudential framework and the risk management in individual institutions need improvement.

Related Articles
Related Articles

© Copyright 2009 by Finfacts.com

Top of Page

EU Economy
Latest Headlines
Spain's strong recovery to slow in the next few years
Italy's Mezzogiorno is Achilles' heel of Euro Area - lowest birth rate since 1862
Euro Area GDP grows at weak 0.3% in Q2 2015
German GDP up 0.4% in Q2 2015; France's GDP stagnates
Germany's Surplus: Lots of critics; Credible solutions scarce
Euro Area industrial production dips in June and May after a flat April
Greece faces two years of recession according to EU officials
High EU youth unemployment rate not as bad as it seems
Eurozone retail PMI surges to highest since January 2011
ECB monetary policy still tight for Southern Europe
German exports fell in June — surplus at record; Exports up 13.7% year-on-year
Eurozone manufacturing sector continued to expand in July
Weak euro unlikely to have significant impact on Euro Area growth
Is Euro Area Ireland's top trading partner?: EU28 is overwhelmingly UK's
German car firms boost exports from Spain, UK, Portugal, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania
Flash Eurozone manufacturing/ services PMI close to four-year high despite Greek crisis
Krugman calls euro a Roach Motel; Hotel California gets 1-star grade
Greece & Euro Crisis: July 2015 articles from Finfacts
Greece and other poor countries in Euro Area will not become rich
Euro Area manufacturing/ services PMI hits four-year high in June
Western European car market: Recovery continues
Greece could become a failed state like Venezuela
Multinational companies pay on average 30% less tax than domestic competitors in EU
EU's list of 30 tax havens omits the biggest 4 in Europe
China to invest in Juncker's European investment fund
Greek talks collapse; Game theorists gambling with future — Germany's vice-chancellor
German exports and industrial production in strong rises in April
Tackling Inequality: Scandinavian countries have the most successful welfare systems in Europe
Eurozone unemployment fell by 130,000 in April 2015 — down 849,000 in 12 months
Eurozone service sector business activity slowed during May
German 2015 GDP forecast cut; Jobless level at 24-year low
Eurozone manufacturing in modest acceleration in May
FDI into Europe at record in 2014; UK on top: Germany location for future investment
Eurozone economy loses growth momentum; Jobs growth rises
Athens leak suggests Juncker has plan for Greece
Draghi will not end QE early but warns of risks
Eurozone grows faster than US and UK in Q1 2015
German GDP at slower pace, France faster in Q1 2015
Germany may cut income tax; Germans still shun risky investments
Germany had record exports and imports in March 2015