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Parliamentary questions
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24 February 2020
Question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 138
Dimitrios Papadimoulis
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Agreement enabling Turkey to avoid being listed by the EU as a tax haven

It has been reported (1) that an agreement has recently been reached by European diplomats giving Turkey more time - until the end of the year - to comply with EU requirements regarding tax transparency and the prevention of tax evasion in order to avoid inclusion on EU’s ‘black list of tax havens’, which was drawn up at the end of 2017, following revelations of widespread corporate and individual tax avoidance. This concession is allegedly intended as an olive branch to avert possible conflict with Ankara, given current developments in connection with the refugee crisis and in the Cyprus EEZ.

One European diplomat has apparently commented to Reuters that ‘Turkey should, strictly speaking, be included on the list but has been exempted for reasons of political expediency’.

It appears that the matter is to be discussed and a decision made at the forthcoming Eurogroup meeting.

In view of this:

Can the Commission confirm reports that the question of more favourable treatment for Turkey regarding tax issues is linked to geopolitical developments?

If this is indeed the case and if such a course of action is decided, how can this be reconciled with the objectives of tax transparency and equal treatment, both within the EU and in relation to third countries?

(1)www.reuters.com/article/us-eu-turkey-tax/eu-to-give-turkey-more-time-to-avoid-tax-blacklisting-sources-idUSKBN2062R7 & https://www.euractiv.com/section/global-europe/news/eu-to-give-turkey-more-time-to-avoid-tax-blacklisting/
Original language of question: EL
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