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Childers urges fellow Irish MEPs to clear way for tax evasion inquiry

Press Release

Tuesday 13 Jan 2015

Nessa Childers, Independent MEP for Dublin, has this week called on other MEPs to sign up to a proposal to set up a special committee of inquiry in the European Parliament to investigate breaches of EU law in relation to tax rulings issued by Member States.

Under its own rules, the European Parliament may set up a committee of inquiry to investigate breaches of EU laws or failure to properly implement them, at the request of a quarter of its members.

The proposal, which is supported by Ms. Childers, is now only 9 MEP signatures short of reaching the necessary threshold to be tabled officially.

Speaking from Strasbourg, Ms. Childers said:

“A very significant minority in the European Parliament has been gathering momentum over the past couple of months, during which we have been pressing the case for a serious investigation into questionable tax deals between governments and big multinational corporations at the public interest’s expense,.

“Aggressive tax planning of the kind made public by the ‘Luxleaks’ scandal is not only flagrantly unfair to law abiding citizens who work for a living and pay more than their fair share to contribute to the community.

It also deprives them of public services because others evade their own obligations to.

“Rip off schemes that allow big companies to exploit loopholes across tax jurisdictions and get away with paying far less than 1% in tax don’t have a place in societies governed by the rule of law.

“In this context, the very least we can do is shed light on these practices and make sure that the rules we have are enforced in the first place. This is why I am calling on my colleagues to step forward and help us collect the 9 signatures we are missing.

“As European Parliamentarians, we have the right and the duty to carefully look into these administrative decisions, such as ‘letters of comfort’ offered to multinational companies, and whether the European Commission is enforcing EU rules on State aids.”