The EU Commission wants to make its own push for taxation of international digital corporations in 2021 if necessary. "If there is no global agreement, we as the Commission will present draft proposals next year for both a digital tax and minimum taxation", announced Economic Affairs Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni on the sidelines of a meeting of EU finance and economics ministers in Berlin on Saturday. On this ie it is "it is now or never", something must be done now.
Global minimum taxation to combat tax haven flight
A digital tax has long been the subject of international debate. The ball is currently in the court of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which is to draw up a draft. The tax is primarily intended to target large American technology companies such as Amazon and Google, whose business model, according to critics, pays too little tax in individual markets. The USA is therefore rather reluctant. A global minimum tax is also being discussed, which would make it unattractive for large corporations to flee to tax havens.
Scholz was optimistic that there could still be a global agreement on the digital tax and continues to rely on an agreement at the OECD level, but also emphasized: "It cannot remain that we only talk to each other, but these things must also be implemented." In this context, he adheres to the rule "Never give up".
From brakeman to driver
On Friday, France’s Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire increased the prere on the USA and the other EU states. If no international consensus was found by the end of the year, the European countries would have to introduce their own tax in the first trimester of 2021, he had demanded. France has already unilaterally adopted a digital tax, but suspended advance payments until the end of the year after the U.S. threatened punitive tariffs.
The FDP in the Bundestag warned that a unilateral European digital tax could significantly complicate talks on combating illegitimate tax practices. "Unilateral taxes would further escalate the situation and lead the US to respond with measures that would cost Europe a lot of money", declared financial politician Florian Toncar. The Grunen, on the other hand, agreed with Gentiloni. "The EU Commission is doing what the German government should have done a long time ago", said finance politician Danyal Bayaz. The German government must "from being the brakeman to the driver of a European solution" become.