Monday, September 26, 2011

Norway's Ministry of Finance proposes Country-by-Country Reporting

Guest blog by Peter Ringstad, Coordinator, Tax Justice Network - Norge

Breakthrough as official CbC-proposal for all sectors goes on public hearing in this fall.

As the EU Commission's proposal on CbC is nearing, the State Secretary for the Ministry of Finance in Norway, Roger Schjerva, announced on Wednesday 21st September that there will be a round of public hearing on the introduction of CbC in Norway after the European proposal is introduced. Schjerva said that the best alternative would be if the international or European community acted in concert on this issue, but that Norway also could be willing to go at it alone. This would follow up the Action Plan Against Economic Crime from earlier this year, where the Government stated that it was open to implement CbC rules in Norway as a part of a EU legislation process, or on an individual basis.

The public hearing will provide an opportunity for important input to secure that Norway implements a solid CbC standard. Especially if the EU proposal will be a watered down version of full Country-by-Country reporting, it is vital that Norway can move ahead to show that thorough reporting can and should be accomplished, and is practically possible. The Norwegian hearing will also provide an arena to argue for country-by-country reporting on all sectors, not only for the extractive industries sector, that looks likely to be the subject of the forthcoming EU proposal. Schjerva has been quoted in the press saying that the Ministry of Finance supports a CbC for all sectors.

The State Secretary's speech in English is here.

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