EP tax investigation
Commission de facto denies Parliament access to essential documents
In its investigations on the Luxleaks scandals, the European Parliament requested the European Commission to send essential documents in order to fulfil its mandate. While some documents were sent, 25 documents and the internal minutes of tax meetings with the Member States are still missing, crucial to fulfil the Committee’s mandate. Faced with Parliament’s insistence the Commission offered a highly restricted access to the documents, wrote the Director General of DG Taxud in a letter to the parliamentarians yesterday.
Commenting on the proposal, Green economic and finance spokesperson Sven Giegold said:
“The consultation the European Commission is offering is simply scandalous. The European Parliament is rightfully investigating on a massive tax scandal and needs these background documents to put light on what happened and who is responsible. We cannot accept that only few parliamentarians may read the documents in a closed room and cannot take notes or do anything meaningful with them. Obviously the European Parliament must respect legitimate secrecy. But the Parliament shall have the right to draw conclusions from the documents in its deliberations and in the final report of the committee.
This shows how important the investigation committee in the European Parliament is and the need to extend its mandate beyond November to lift the veil of opacity surrounding European decision-making on tax matters.
Jean-Claude Juncker must take his responsibility when addressing the TAXE committee in the Parliament and must commit to make all missing documents accessible in a meaningful way in order to restore his credibility.”
The proposal of Mr. Zourek of Taxud:
The TAXE committee is due to finalise its investigations and adopt its report by 15th of October in committee and in plenary in November 2015. An additional hearing is scheduled on Thursday 17th of September with President of the Commission Jean-Claude Juncker. Commissioner for taxation Pierre Moscovici. Commissioner for competition Margrete Vestager will also be present. The meeting will be broadcast at:
Letter from commissioner Moscovici refusing access to documents: