Global tax agreement must be a catalyst for a fairer economy, PES Financial and Economic Network demands
From tax fraud exposed by the Pandora Papers, to surging energy prices, urgent action is needed to ensure economic fairness for citizens, the PES Financial and Economic Network (FEN) agreed today.
Following the historic deal on minimum corporate taxation agreed earlier this year – brokered by German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz, European Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni and other progressives – socialists want to see the European Union and its Member States take further steps to tackle economic inequality and injustice, and build a fair recovery for all.
The PES FEN – made up of representatives from PES member parties and organisations, MEPs, trade unionists and others – convened online this afternoon to discuss taxation, economic governance and energy prices.
Maria João Rodrigues, PES Economic and Financial Network chair and FEPS President, said:
“The Agreement on the global corporate tax rate is very welcome and should now be improved. It has been a long-standing priority for us. This Network advocated strongly for this agreement, in full support for Commissioner Gentiloni’s efforts, as well as many other valued members of our political family, such as Olaf Scholz.
“Now we need to build on this momentum, using it as a catalyst for coordinated action to build a fair recovery which reduces economic inequality and injustice. The Pandora Papers lifted the curtain on the scandalous behaviour of the world’s richest people. On top of that, citizens are exposed to skyrocketing energy prices too, hitting the most vulnerable household hardest. We must keep working for a fair economy for all.
“It is important that we make progress on own resources and reform economic governance and fiscal rules. We must do so in a way which supports Europe to recover through successful digital and climate transitions. In this effort, keeping investment levels high will be key. Our stronger European budgetary capacity, the Semester, the Macroeconomic Imbalances Procedure, the flexibility allowed in the Stability and Growth Pact – all these elements need to be checked against our current and future economic, social, climate and digital goals.”
Meeting participants took the opportunity to welcome the historic step-forward on corporate taxation after the OECD agreement – pushed by progressives – was endorsed by the G20 last month. Europe’s socialists and democrats will keep up the pressure for tax justice.
PES FEN members also discussed the continued unpredictable economic situation in Europe, where the vaccine rollout has encouraged economic reopening, but at the same time infections rates are beginning to rise again. The meeting discussed the challenges ahead: the need for a sustainable debt reduction strategy, and how this can be coupled with an ambitious investment plan which meets our climate goals and the targets of the digital transition.
The meeting was attended by:
Maria Joao Rodrigues, Chair of The PES Financial and Economic Network, President of FEPS
Pedro Marques, MEP, S&D Group VP and PES/S&D Coordinator for the implementation of our progressive Commission Work Programme, S&D Group, PES
Yonnec Polet, Deputy Secretary General, PES
Joachim Schuster, MEP, SPD, Germany
Paul Tang, MEP, FISC Chair, PvdA, Netherlands
Margarida Marques, MEP, Rapporteur on Economic governance INI, PS, Portugal
Florent Legrand, Political advisor, PS Belgium
Wouter Lips, Political advisor, Vooruit, Belgium
Andreas Psaras, Secretary of EDEK's Financial Committee, EDEK, Cyprus
Milan Cvikl, Chair of SD Committee on Finance, Development and Cohesion Policy, SD, Slovenia
Luciano Ferrari, Head of Politics & Deputy Secretary General, SP, Switzerland
Elke Ferner, PES Women Executive Member, PES Women
Bastian Meić, Political Advisor, PES Group in the Committee of the Regions
François Balate, Chef de Cabinet to Maria Joao Rodrigues, FEPS
Jos Bertrand, Coordinator, European Senior Organisation (ESO)
Matthieu Méaulle, Advisor, European Trade Union Confederation
Dominik Bernhofer, Head of the tax law department, Chamber of Labour in Austria
Miguel Carapeto, Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, Political Advisor, S&D
Susanne Reither, Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, Political Advisor, S&D