Finance ministers of the 11 Member States that decided to proceed under the enhanced cooperation mechanism to adopt a Financial Transaction Tax are close to striking a deal after last week´s discussions. As the European Court of Justice rejected UK´s ruling against it, there is but details standing in the FTT´s way. One of such details is a schedule for the deployment of the tax. According to the German finance minister Wolfgang Schauble, the tax should be introduced gradually in 2016. Called for since the 2008/09 financial crisis, the FTT has been regularly on debate schedule among finance ministers. The agreed version of this so-called Robin Hood tax includes a 0.1% levy on shares and bonds and 0.01% on certain derivatives. This limited scope is, according to Schauble, also part of the step-by-step tactics of gradual adoption. According to its supporters, this is a very limited tax. FTT with these characteristics should bring around €30 billion to the FTT-11 budgets, which is close to symbolical. Also, a 0.1% tax will not curb market behavior towards a more responsible one to avoid crises as the 2008/09 one, which was originally one of the main motivations for the adoption of such tax. As presented, the FTT is not much more than a symbolic political gesture. Even so, however, countries led by the UK strongly oppose the levy. However, the final deal of the FTT-11 is expected before the EP elections later this month.
At the ECOFIN meeting of 6 May, the finance ministers discussed also some amendments to the parent-subsidiary directive in order to prevent tax avoidance, the in-depth reviews of the macroeconomic imbalance procedure presented by the Commission and adopted the bank resolution directive.
20th February 2019
25th January 2019