Taxation: European harmonisation of corporate tax base - an opportunity for growth and jobs
European companies doing business across borders will soon have the possibility to apply a common set of rules for calculating their tax base. The European Parliament has adopted a report by Marianne Thyssen MEP, which calls for the introduction of a Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base, or a CCCTB.
"A harmonised system for calculating the tax base will greatly benefit Europe's competitiveness, stimulate economic growth and lead to new jobs," said Marianne Thyssen. "Setting the tax rates remains a prerogative of the Member States, but the possibility to apply a common set of rules for calculating the tax base will help in reducing administrative and fiscal barriers when doing business in Europe. The CCCTB will make it easier for companies to have and keep branches in different Member States as they will be able to consolidate the results of their individual branches. This allows them to compensate for any losses a group member might have. The system ensures that economic and social aspects are more important than purely fiscal reasons when companies choose their locations."
Marianne Thyssen proposes a roadmap to generalise the use of the CCCTB system after a brief transitional period. As soon as it is introduced, all companies will be able to apply the CCCTB. After two years the system will apply to all "European companies" ('Societas Europaea' under the European Company Statute) and "European cooperative societies". After five years it will apply to all companies with the exception of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which can still opt in if they wish to do so.
"In times of economic crisis, we cannot forego this opportunity to stimulate European business. The European Parliament already called for the introduction of the CCCTB ten years ago. Now is the time to get on with it. With all 27 Member States if possible, but if unanimity turns out to be a bridge too far, the European Commission has to start the procedure for reinforced cooperation as soon as possible," Marianne Thyssen concluded.