EU-US trade and investment relations: Effects on tax evasion, money laundering and tax transparency

06-03-2017

This ex-post impact assessment analyses EU-US trade and investment relations to assess whether and, if so, to what extent these relations have impacted on issues related to tax evasion, money laundering and tax transparency. The EU and US economies are highly intertwined, generating together half the world’s gross domestic product and more than 30 % of global trade. Overall, trade and investment relations between the European Union and the United States do not seem to have impacted on US efforts to combat tax evasion, strengthen anti-money laundering legislation, and its implementation, and boost tax transparency. While some progress has been made in the ongoing negotiation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which also aims to establish regulatory cooperation between the EU and the USA on financial services, progress has been below expectations. The United States has set up mechanisms for information exchange with EU Member States, has signed tax treaties with almost all EU Member States, and has developed a robust legal framework to address money laundering and combat terrorism financing. Despite being largely compliant with the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force, however, challenges remain on questions of beneficial ownership, cross-border exchange of information, privacy issues, and designated non-financial businesses and professions.

This ex-post impact assessment analyses EU-US trade and investment relations to assess whether and, if so, to what extent these relations have impacted on issues related to tax evasion, money laundering and tax transparency. The EU and US economies are highly intertwined, generating together half the world’s gross domestic product and more than 30 % of global trade. Overall, trade and investment relations between the European Union and the United States do not seem to have impacted on US efforts to combat tax evasion, strengthen anti-money laundering legislation, and its implementation, and boost tax transparency. While some progress has been made in the ongoing negotiation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which also aims to establish regulatory cooperation between the EU and the USA on financial services, progress has been below expectations. The United States has set up mechanisms for information exchange with EU Member States, has signed tax treaties with almost all EU Member States, and has developed a robust legal framework to address money laundering and combat terrorism financing. Despite being largely compliant with the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force, however, challenges remain on questions of beneficial ownership, cross-border exchange of information, privacy issues, and designated non-financial businesses and professions.