France urges Irish solidarity on tax

 

Sir,– On the subject of efforts to achieve a global minimum corporate tax rate, I write as a citizen of Ireland’s closest EU neighbour, France, as a friend and as a convinced European. I have lived in Ireland and love your country. I know its incredible resilience and ability to innovate.

Multilateralism is the foundation of our unique European model of solidarity. It is the core of our political project and the key to a strong Europe on the international stage.

At the G20 meeting in Venice on July 9th-10th, and following the adoption of a plan at the OECD on July 1st, Europe will be faced with a historic responsibility to obtain a reform of global corporate taxation that will allow the introduction of a minimal tax rate of at least 15 per cent. We hold in the palm of our hands the solution to our sustainable European future, by making sure that fiscal competition does not undermine growth or threaten future investments and social cohesion.

In this battle, Europe can only convince its global partners if it moves together as one. These choices are key to the future of all our long-term prosperity.

About 30 years ago, Ireland made the bold choices it needed to grow. Today, Ireland’s prosperity is impressive and strong enough not to depend on maintaining a few percentage points of corporate tax differential.

Changing a model takes time but can succeed when it is clearly in Europe’s long-term interest.

In the wake of the greatest public health crisis Europe has known in a century, the entire EU faces the challenge of strengthening our models. We must invest massively to renew our industries, promote greener growth, improve infrastructure, education and healthcare.

Fairer corporate tax systems and resources from actors who profit from the current situation can finance our transformation.

France will always defend our interests together, as we have during Brexit negotiations. Let us stand side by side again, to support fairer global taxation of companies and strengthen Europe’s capacity to invest and act for the benefit of all Europeans.

– Yours, etc,

CLÉMENT BEAUNE,

Minister for European

Affairs, Paris.