Thursday, July 16, 2009

European Investment Bank - in tax havens

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the EU’s house bank, whose role in developing countries is increasing. Yet a new study has just been published, showing that many projects and beneficiaries funded by EIB money involve tax havens and transnational companies that use them for tax purposes. It is entitled Flying in the face of development: How European Investment Bank loans enable tax havens.

As the report notes:

"Public and political opinion have swung more solidly than ever in recent years behind bold moves against tax evasion and for progressive taxation. The EIB should take the opportunity of updating its policy to ensure that it closes the loopholes identified in this report and ensures that greater transparency and a stronger threat of punishment are used to demonstrate to clients that the EIB is serious about this agenda, and not merely defensive."

It's an important report, looking first at illicit capital flows more generally, then looking at whom the EIB is bankrolling, then offering pointers for action. Read it here.

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