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Parliament to take first step on pension tax issue

EUROPE - The European Parliament committee on economic and monetary affairs (EMAC), will next week vote (November 6) on the adoption of the draft report on taxation of occupational pensions by Dutch socialist MEP, Ieke van den Burg.

Van den Burg, the Parliament rapporteur on the taxation directive, has in general been supportive of the strategy proposed by EC Commissioner Frits Bolkestein.

In her report, she noted that the ‘unanimity’ requirement in the area of taxation for any progress at the European level created difficulties and urged the Commission to make full use of all its other powers under Treaty.
In particular, she said, this meant bringing member states before the European Court of Justice (ECJ) if their tax provisions were deemed to hamper the free movement of persons.

The Commission has in the past been reluctant to launch infringement proceedings over direct taxation issues.

Talking to IPE-Newsline recently, Van den Burg said that one of the proposals in her report was that the Commission should adopt a position on pensions before the Barcelona summit of EU leaders next year.

She added: “ I want to get the tax question on to the agenda and I think it has to be included because it is linked to labour mobility and the future of pensions.”

The rapporteur said she also wanted to see bilateral tax issues shifted to a multilateral level and included more practical suggestions on cross-border information sharing for pensions in her report.

Should the EMAC committee vote to adopt the report, then it will go forward to a plenary meeting of the Parliament for a full vote.

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