Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Ceisteanna (37)

Gerald Nash

Ceist:

37. Deputy Ged Nash asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment if the Government will join the qualified majority in support of the compromise text on public by-country reporting agreed by the Portuguese Presidency of the European Council, given that the clarity sought by Ireland and other member states on whether this file should progress through special legislative procedure or through ordinary legislative procedure has been provided by the Council legal service; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7423/21]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Enterprise)

Ireland supports transparency and good governance including “country by country” reporting by MNEs to national tax authorities. The Finance Act 2015 introduced obligations for relevant companies to report to the Revenue Commissioners.

The Proposal for a Directive to amend Directive 2013/34/EU (the Accounting Directive) as regards disclosure of income tax information by certain undertakings and branches (country by country reporting) was made by the EU Commission in April 2016.

Dáil Éireann adopted a Reasoned Opinion in June 2016 to the effect that this proposed Directive is a tax matter and does not meet the principle of subsidiarity. The Reasoned Opinion is available at 2016-06-30_report-on-com-2016-198_en.pdf (oireachtas.ie).

The Proposal was on the Competitiveness Council Agenda on 28 November 2019 where there was not sufficient support for the Presidency’s Proposal and no general approach reached. Ireland supported a Joint Statement to the Competitiveness Council in November 2019 which agreed with the opinion of the Council Legal Service that the legal basis for this Proposal should be Taxation (Article 115 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union), and therefore, should be considered by ECOFIN Council with unanimity voting. This measure should have the benefit of tax expertise to ensure that it is consistent with existing reporting requirements and, importantly, with the international cooperation and exchange of information arrangements, which are based on confidentiality. Tax experts are best placed to ensure that international efforts to collect income tax from multinational corporations will not be undermined by new measures.

The next Competitiveness Council will be an Informal one by video conference on 25 February 2021. The final agenda and papers for this meeting have not yet issued.