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EU Political Update

Talking Tech Highlights: 14-18th November 2016

27 April 2017

A weekly review of tech related political developments in the European Union

Week in Review 

Taxation: Council of the European Union agrees criteria for screening third country jurisdictions

On 8 November 2016, the Council of the EU agreed on the criteria and guidelines for selecting and screening third countries with a view to establish an EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes. The broader aim of the initiative is to combat tax base erosion and profit shifting ('BEPS').

The code of conduct group (business taxation) of the Council of the EU, supported by the general secretariat of the Council of the EU, will carry out the screening process. The first screening criterion is the tax transparency criteria. These criteria should be fulfilled in order to be considered complaint on tax transparency and include: (a) effective implementation and compliance with the OECD Automatic Exchange of Information ('AEOI') standard; (b) compliance with the OECD Exchange of Information on Request ('EOIR') standard; (c) ratification of or participation in the OECD Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance ('MCMAA') in tax matters; and (d) implementation of a network of exchange arrangements covering all Member States, allowing for both AEOI and EOIR. The second criterion is the fair taxation criteria. This includes: (a) absence of harmful preferential tax measures; and (b) absence of offshore structures or arrangements aimed at attracting profits which do not reflect real economic activity. The final screening criterion relates to whether or not a jurisdiction has effectively implemented the agreed OECD anti-BEPS minimum standards.

Jurisdictions included in the OECD's and G20 members' list of non-cooperative jurisdictions will be automatically included in the EU list.

Jurisdictions selected for screening should be notified by January 2017. Discussions with jurisdictions aimed at resolving concerns and agreeing on commitments are expected to take place by the summer of 2017. The Council of the EU is expected to endorse a list of non-cooperative jurisdictions by the end of 2017.  

This week in the Institutions 
European Commission 

14 November 

  • Vice-President Andrus Ansip will receive Ms Axelle Lemaire, Secretary of State for Innovation and Digital Affairs of France 
  • Commissioner Günther Oettinger will participate in the 'B-DAY: Going Giga' conference and the Broadband Europe Award 2015 Ceremony   

15 November 

  • Vice-President Ansip will receive Ms Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, Data Protection Supervisor on e-privacy of France. He will also receive Mr Travis Kalanick, CEO of Uber Technologies

17 November 

  • First Vice-President Timmermans will give the opening speech at the second Annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights   
  • Vice-President Ansip will be in South Korea to participate in a meeting with South Korean representatives of industry, academia and government. He will also visit the Samsung Innovation Museum and will meet Mr Jong-Kyun Shin, CEO of Samsung Electronics
  • Commissioner Cecilia Malmström will deliver a speech on 'Digital trade: priorities for the 21st century' 
  • Commissioner Moscovici will deliver the opening speech at the European Commission-IMF Conference on Taxation, Investment and Entrepreneurship 
  • Commissioner Julian King will deliver a speech at the 4th Annual European Cyber Security Conference   

18 November 

  • First Vice-President Timmermans, Commissioner Oettinger and Commissioner will host the Commission's second Annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights, on the theme of Media Pluralism and Democracy     
EU Political Update

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