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South East MEP Sharon Bowles addresses key concerns at Brussels Tax Forum

March 1, 2010 4:00 PM

Lib Dem MEP Sharon Bowles delivered a keynote speech to the third annual Brussels Tax Forum today in which she addressed the concerns of millions of EU taxpayers.

New Tax Commissioner, Algirdas Šemeta, who was quizzed in January by the European Parliament's Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, of which Sharon is Chair, was in attendance, along with other top policymakers.

Sharon Bowles said:

"With regard to taxation policy, I believe the automatic exchange of information between Member States is beneficial. That way, those who commit tax fraud have nowhere to hide.

"It is also urgent that the European Commission launches a debate on the future of the VAT system in the internal market. Indeed, a lot needs doing to make the VAT system easier to apply, with fewer burdens for tax payers.

"On 'Robin Hood Tax', also known as 'Financial Transaction Tax', this is a popular idea, particularly in the UK, but how would it work? Who would collect this tax and what would the money be spent on?

"The EU led the way on the so-called 'Robin Hood Tax' but that said; I am reluctant to proffer my fullest support until there has been a thorough analysis of how it would work."

ENDS