26 Oct 2016
EUROPEAN COMMISSION DAILY NEWS – 26 OCTOBERBrussels Daily
President Juncker addresses European Parliament plenary session
Today in Strasbourg, European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, addressed the plenary session of the European Parliament on the outcome of the European Council of 20-21 October. Regarding the EU-Canada trade agreement, CETA, President Juncker hoped the Belgian federal government and its regional counterparts would be able to come to an agreement “in the course of the day”. He also underlined that finding a solution was more important than insisting on a signature of the Agreement tomorrow: “What matters, is for the agreement to be reached today so that the kingdom of Belgium can sign the agreement at the appropriate moment“. Turning to the broader debate on trade defence, the President underlined that the EU needed urgently to strengthen its current instruments, as the Commission set out in its communication of 18 October on a ‘Robust trade policy for the EU in the interest of jobs and growth’. “The Americans defend their industry and especially their steel industry – we must do the same,” said the President. On migration, President Juncker highlighted progress under the EU-Turkey Statement: “In the six months preceding the entry into force of the EU-Turkey Statement, the total number of migrants arriving from Turkey to Greece was 739,000; in the six months following the agreement, this figure fell to 18,000, that is, a difference of 721,000 migrants.” Regarding the Commission’s strategy for jobs and growth, the President welcomed the European Council’s support for the next phase of the Investment Plan for Europe, where the Commission has proposed to double the capacity and duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments.
Commission proposes major corporate tax reform for the EU
The Commission has announced plans to overhaul the way in which companies are taxed in the Single Market, delivering a growth-friendly and fair corporate tax system. Re‑calibrated as part of a broader package of corporate tax reforms, the Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB) will make it easier and cheaper to do business in the Single Market and will act as a powerful tool against tax avoidance. Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis said: “Tax policy should support the EU’s goals of economic growth and social justice. Today’s proposals aim to boost growth and investment, support enterprise and ensure fairness. The current corporate tax system treats debt financing of companies more favourably than equity financing. Reducing this debt-equity bias in the tax system is an important element of the Capital Markets Union Action Plan and underlines our commitment to deliver on this project.”Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs said: “With the rebooted CCCTB proposal, we’re addressing the concerns of both businesses and citizens in one fell swoop. The many conversations I’ve had as Taxation Commissioner have made it crystal-clear to me that companies need simpler tax rules within the EU. At the same time, we need to drive forward our fight against tax avoidance, which is delivering real change. Finance Ministers should look at this ambitious and timely package with a fresh pair of eyes because it will create a robust tax system fit for the 21st century.” A press release, Q&A, factsheet and video are available online. Re-watch the press conference with Commissioner Moscovici on EbS
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