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Panama Papers: ALDE welcomes the setting- up of an inquiry committee in EP


14 Apr 2016


Euro & Finance
Justice & Home Affairs

The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats welcomes the decision of the European Parliament's group leaders to set-up an inquiry committee to investigate the recent Panama Papers revelations. The ALDE group demands an in-depth and efficient inquiry.

verhofstadt left side 90.jpgGuy Verhofstadt, ALDE Group leader, said: "It is time that we get all the information on this scandal".

"It still is too easy for many companies and individuals to avoid taxes abroad. This has to stop".

"The setting-up of this committee is a key step to unveil the truth and take the appropriate legislative measures to prevent this from happening again".

goulard 90.jpgSylvie Goulard, ALDE ECON coordinator, added: "The recent Panama Paper revelations show the need for action on two different levels. Firstly, we need a detailed analysis and evaluation of the information to ensure that we really understand what has happened; at the same time, we need to verify that we have all the information available. The enquiry committee will undertake this work as soon as it is established".

Secondly, these important actions must be complemented by the ECON committee increasing its focus on tax issues, as there is clearly still a lot of work to do in this area, as illustrated by the Commission proposals published earlier this week".

THEURER_90.jpgMichael Theurer, ALDE co-rapporteur of the special committee on tax rulings, added: "An inquiry committee is the right format to deal with the Panama Papers revelations The Panama Papers deal with potential criminal acts such as tax evasion, fraud, money laundering and smuggling. LuxLeaks, on the other hand, was about tax avoidance methods that have so far in large parts been legal, which we are now about to change.

"We are talking about the biggest data leak of all times that has made its way in the public and that needs not only judicial but also political consequences. Keeping a low profile on the potential involvement of top-politicians, athletes, managers and banks in tax evasion would mean a boost for right-wing populists. "

Note to editors

The final details of the mandate of the enquiry committee will be decided in May, during the next Conference of presidents meeting.