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Money laundering and tax evasion risks in free ports

17-10-2018

Freeports are conducive to secrecy. In their preferential treatment, they resemble offshore financial centres, offering both high security and discretion and allowing transactions to be made without attracting attention of regulators and direct tax authorities. This study argues that the legal anti-money laundering and tax evasion framework in place in the EU (and elsewhere) is only partially effective in combatting money laundering and tax evasion.

Freeports are conducive to secrecy. In their preferential treatment, they resemble offshore financial centres, offering both high security and discretion and allowing transactions to be made without attracting attention of regulators and direct tax authorities. This study argues that the legal anti-money laundering and tax evasion framework in place in the EU (and elsewhere) is only partially effective in combatting money laundering and tax evasion.

The European Economic Area (EEA), Switzerland and the North

01-05-2018

The European Economic Area (EEA) was set up in 1994 to extend the EU’s provisions on its internal market to the European Free Trade Area (EFTA) countries. Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein are parties to the EEA. Switzerland is a member of EFTA but does not take part in the EEA. The EU and EEA partners (Norway and Iceland) are also linked by various ‘northern policies’ and forums which focus on the rapidly evolving northern reaches of Europe and the Arctic region as a whole.

The European Economic Area (EEA) was set up in 1994 to extend the EU’s provisions on its internal market to the European Free Trade Area (EFTA) countries. Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein are parties to the EEA. Switzerland is a member of EFTA but does not take part in the EEA. The EU and EEA partners (Norway and Iceland) are also linked by various ‘northern policies’ and forums which focus on the rapidly evolving northern reaches of Europe and the Arctic region as a whole.

Workshop: Facilitating external trade via border management

24-05-2017

The subject of trade facilitation and border management lies at the heart of EU trade policy, which seeks to take advantage of global value chains for the benefit of workers, consumers and businesses. This demands that goods may flow smoothly across borders without jeopardising EU values and standards. Trade facilitation principles help reduce the cost of cross-border trade in goods while safeguarding regulatory control objectives. Good border management practice is integral to trade facilitation ...

The subject of trade facilitation and border management lies at the heart of EU trade policy, which seeks to take advantage of global value chains for the benefit of workers, consumers and businesses. This demands that goods may flow smoothly across borders without jeopardising EU values and standards. Trade facilitation principles help reduce the cost of cross-border trade in goods while safeguarding regulatory control objectives. Good border management practice is integral to trade facilitation. In this study many ideas and examples about how borders management can be improved are shown. The key is coordination, cooperation and integration within the respective border agencies (intra-agency), between the many border agencies (inter-agency) and international (with colleagues across the border and EU trade partners). Despite considerable policy interest, research is still in its infancy. There is much demand for further enquiry. This paper discusses relevant principles, ideas and concepts and concludes with a list of recommendations. This includes the recommendation to develop suitable EU institutions in aid of trade facilitation as well as for research.

Rules on independence and responsibility regarding auditing, tax advice, accountancy, account certification services and legal services

14-04-2017

This study maps the rules on independence and responsibility that are applicable at national, EU, and international level that govern the service provision by intermediaries such as companies working in auditing, tax advice, accountancy and account certification or by legal advisors (attorneys, solicitors, legal consultants, in-house lawyers, etc.). The mapping forms the basis for policy recommendations to encourage intermediaries to deliver a positive contribution to combatting tax evasion, tax ...

This study maps the rules on independence and responsibility that are applicable at national, EU, and international level that govern the service provision by intermediaries such as companies working in auditing, tax advice, accountancy and account certification or by legal advisors (attorneys, solicitors, legal consultants, in-house lawyers, etc.). The mapping forms the basis for policy recommendations to encourage intermediaries to deliver a positive contribution to combatting tax evasion, tax avoidance and money laundering. This document was prepared for Policy Department A at the request of the Committee of Inquiry into Money Laundering, Tax Avoidance and Tax Evasion (PANA).

Údar seachtarach

Ian ROXAN (LSE), Saipriya KAMATH (LSE), Willem Pieter DE GROEN (CEPS) ; Research support: Katharina EHRHART (LSE Enterprise)

Carving Out Legacy Assets: A Successful Tool for Bank Restructuring?

15-03-2017

This paper was drafted under supervision of the Economic Governance Support Unit. Beginning with the proposal by Enria (2017), the paper discusses the scope for successful bank restructuring through a carveout of impaired assets and a transfer of these assets to a government-sponsored asset management company. The paper argues that the success of such an operation requires a use of public funds, either outright or through contingent commitments. Clawback provisions are problematic because they create ...

This paper was drafted under supervision of the Economic Governance Support Unit. Beginning with the proposal by Enria (2017), the paper discusses the scope for successful bank restructuring through a carveout of impaired assets and a transfer of these assets to a government-sponsored asset management company. The paper argues that the success of such an operation requires a use of public funds, either outright or through contingent commitments. Clawback provisions are problematic because they create contingent liabilities that merely shift risks from the assets side to the liabilities sides of banks’ balance sheets. The paper distinguishes between asset impairments coming from considerations of prospective returns and asset impairments coming from frictions in the markets in which these assets are traded. It also distinguishes between threats to bank solvency and threats to bank funding/liquidity. In each case, the success of bank restructuring from asset carveouts depends on the extent to which threats to the bank’s solvency is eliminated. If these threats concern bank funding and asset liquidations at depressed prices, public funds may eventually not be needed. If threats to bank solvency come from nonperforming loans, taxpayer support may be essential. The notion of “real economic value” as the price at which assets should be transferred is problematic and leaves ample room for hidden subsidies. The success of restructuring of the individual bank may itself come at a risk to financial stability as the preservation of existing capacities maintains competitive pressure and depresses bank profitability. Additional risks may come from the burden on the government’s fiscal stance.

Údar seachtarach

Martin Hellwig

Fighting tax crimes – Cooperation between Financial Intelligence Units

14-03-2017

Financial intelligence units (FIUs) are the national structures responsible for the receipt, analysis and dissemination of financial information to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. Given the strong cross-border dimensions of money laundering, the exchange of information across FIUs is key to ensure illicit flows of money are properly detected and subsequently investigated by law enforcement authorities. This study aims to provide a better understanding of the current state of play ...

Financial intelligence units (FIUs) are the national structures responsible for the receipt, analysis and dissemination of financial information to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. Given the strong cross-border dimensions of money laundering, the exchange of information across FIUs is key to ensure illicit flows of money are properly detected and subsequently investigated by law enforcement authorities. This study aims to provide a better understanding of the current state of play in relation to the role, powers and activities of FIUs in fighting financial crime in general and tax crimes in particular, both at European and International level.

Potential and Challenges of e-Voting in the European Union

02-06-2016

This study was commissioned and supervised by the European Parliament’s Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the AFCO Committee. It addresses the potentials and challenges of the implementation of Internet voting in European Parliament elections. It considers the social, political, legal, and technological implications of its introduction as an alternative to on-paper ballot and builds on the recent experience of previous trials and successful e-enabled elections ...

This study was commissioned and supervised by the European Parliament’s Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the AFCO Committee. It addresses the potentials and challenges of the implementation of Internet voting in European Parliament elections. It considers the social, political, legal, and technological implications of its introduction as an alternative to on-paper ballot and builds on the recent experience of previous trials and successful e-enabled elections to issue technical recommendations regarding Internet voting in the European Union.

Údar seachtarach

Alexander H. Trechsel in collaboration with: Vasyl Kucherenko and Frederico Silva

Comparing EU and EFTA Trade Agreements: Drivers, Actors, Benefits, and Costs

30-05-2016

EFTA states have built up a network of 26 preferential trade agreements (PTAs) with 37 partners, compared to more than 120 trade agreements concluded by the EU with more than 45 partners. There are substantial differences between EU and EFTA PTAs in terms of scope and ambition. EFTA agreements still focus on traditional areas of market access, while the post-1990 EU agreements are more elaborate, values-driven, political and comprehensive. As a bloc, the EU has more leverage when it negotiates ...

EFTA states have built up a network of 26 preferential trade agreements (PTAs) with 37 partners, compared to more than 120 trade agreements concluded by the EU with more than 45 partners. There are substantial differences between EU and EFTA PTAs in terms of scope and ambition. EFTA agreements still focus on traditional areas of market access, while the post-1990 EU agreements are more elaborate, values-driven, political and comprehensive. As a bloc, the EU has more leverage when it negotiates around the world. The size of its market and its highly developed common policies mean that the EU can bring more to the negotiating table and has stronger tools to enforce its economic interests and political conditions compared to the smaller EFTA states whose political and economic cooperation is limited. Although the EFTA states do not form a customs union like the EU, they usually negotiate PTAs as a group, bringing their combined economic and political weight to bear. However, they retain the right to reach bilateral trade agreements with third countries outside the EFTA framework, such as Switzerland's PTAs with Japan and China, and Iceland's bilateral PTA with China. EFTA's small size nonetheless has some benefits. Since EFTA states are not so constrained by — often diverging — interests they can be more flexible in their negotiations. In some cases EFTA has concluded trade deals relatively quickly compared to the EU, but this has been at the expense of relatively shallow trade agreements.

Údar seachtarach

Andreas MAURER

Cross-Border Restitution Claims of Art Looted in Armed Conflicts and Wars and Alternatives to Court Litigations

19-05-2016

This study was commissioned and supervised by the European Parliament's Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. Restitution of art looted during past and present armed conflicts is a major issue for our societies. Claiming restitution before courts – often in foreign States – has proven to be difficult. That is why parties turn more and more to dispute resolution means alternative to court litigation. This study examines the legal difficulties ...

This study was commissioned and supervised by the European Parliament's Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. Restitution of art looted during past and present armed conflicts is a major issue for our societies. Claiming restitution before courts – often in foreign States – has proven to be difficult. That is why parties turn more and more to dispute resolution means alternative to court litigation. This study examines the legal difficulties related to art restitution claims and proposes policy recommendations for States and EU institutions to overcome these difficulties and seek to achieve just and fair solutions.

Údar seachtarach

Marc-André RENOLD

The World Economic Forum: Influential and controversial

19-01-2016

The World Economic Forum is considered to have significant influence. At the same time, it attracts considerable criticism. To its proponents, the organisation – through its meetings – enables business, NGOs and political leaders to meet and debate possible solutions to key issues of global concern. To its critics, the Forum, and specifically its annual meetings, is nothing more than an opaque venue for political and business leaders to take decisions without having to account to their electorate ...

The World Economic Forum is considered to have significant influence. At the same time, it attracts considerable criticism. To its proponents, the organisation – through its meetings – enables business, NGOs and political leaders to meet and debate possible solutions to key issues of global concern. To its critics, the Forum, and specifically its annual meetings, is nothing more than an opaque venue for political and business leaders to take decisions without having to account to their electorate or shareholders. Nevertheless, its longevity and the high profile of those attending its events, make it an organisation that is well known and widely referenced. This year, the Forum's Annual Meeting – with the theme 'Mastering the Fourth Industrial Revolution: how to adapt to the transformation of production, distribution and consumption systems, caused by mobile internet, smaller, cheaper and more powerful sensors, as well as artificial intelligence and machine learning' – will be co chaired by six personalities from varying backgrounds, and attended by over 2 500 participants, including several European Commissioners.

Imeachtaí atá ar na bacáin

25-06-2019
Meeting EU energy and climate goals: Energy storage for grids and low-carbon mobility
Imeacht eile -
EPRS

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