A compulsory Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB) for all companies – both transnational and at a later stage also national –, taxing profits where they are generated, and sanctions for companies operating in tax havens: these are among the measures advocated by the European Economic and Social Committee to stop aggressive tax planning in the EU. Aggressive tax planning schemes, which exploit the wide discrepancies between EU Member States' taxation systems, allow big transnational companies to avoid paying their fair share to the Member States in which they operate and cost Member States' treasuries hundreds of billions of euros in losses every year.
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At its plenary session of 9 and 10 December 2015 (meeting of 10 December), the European Economic and Social Committee adopted this resolution by 174 to 8 with 9 abstentions.
The economy for the common good in the spotlight at the European Parliament
At an event organised in the European Parliament on 10 December 2015, EESC member Carlos Trias Pintó discusses with European policymakers and key stakeholders how to further advance towards a "European Ethical Market" based on the principles set out in the "Economy for the Common Good".
Here before our assembly, I wish to express my unequivocal indignation at the brutal, cowardly attacks perpetrated in Paris.
I pay solemn tribute to the victims of this odious act of barbarism and pledge full solidarity with the families and loved ones of the victims, the people of France and the institutions of the French Republic.
20 years after the pledge of Barcelona was taken to promote the peace, stability and security of the region, it is time for the states from the Euro-Mediterranean region to put this pledge into practice. The participants to the yearly Euromed summit of economic and social councils and similar institutions, organised by the EESC in Brussels adopted a common declaration ...
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) wants COP21 to be a major milestone to put the international community on the right track to limit global warming to a maximum of 2° C compared to preindustrial levels. It adopted its position on COP21 already in July 2015 with some key messages for decision makers:
How do you boost reindustrialisation in Europe? How do you reach 20% of GDP from manufacturing by 2020? What are the regional challenges in terms of industrial policy? These were some of the questions raised during a conference – EU industrial policy: does a one-size-fits-all approach work? – held in Malta on 30 November 2015. The participants discussed how to tailor industrial policy to the needs of different EU Member States.
In the context of the work on the EESC opinion on the EU Urban Agenda requested by the Dutch Presidency, the EESC, on the initiative of rapporteur Mr Haken co-organised, together with the Municipality of Prague 14, a study visit to Prague on 1 December 2015.
The purpose of this visit was to gain first-hand insight on urban challenges and potential while experiencing two extremely different sides of Prague (a problem faced by so many other European cities requiring complex solutions). Following their visit to the city centre, the EESC members of the study group together with experts in urban planning and local stakeholders spent a day in Černý Most.
The fifth SME Assembly took place on 18-20 November in Luxembourg. This well-organised, high-level event brought together some 300 participants from across Europe. Amongst them were SME representatives, high-level EU officials, and representatives of NGOs, academia, media, etc.
Mr van Iersel, President of the ECO Section, attended the Informal Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Urban Matters which took place on 27 November 2015 in Luxembourg. Topics raised concerned the possible added-value of small and mediums-sized cities in cross-border regions, the progress towards the EU Urban Agenda, the urban challenges of the refugee situation and most importantly the Luxembourg Presidency Conclusions, a document which sums up the high-level representatives’ declared opinion on the aforementioned matters (see below). This meeting was an essential milestone towards the EU Urban Agenda, a brand new initiative which the EESC has requested for years.