Last June 12 two committees of the European Parliament voted on new tax transparency requirements for multinational corporations. While the outcome would strengthen the text proposed by the European Commission, a proposal by the Liberals and Conservatives introduced a dangerous loophole. The issue will now be sent to the plenary of the European Parliament for a final decision. 

"Until now, the European Parliament has been in favour of letting the public know what multinational corporations pay in taxes and where they do business,” said Tove Maria Ryding, Tax Coordinator at Eurodad, the European Network on Debt and Development. “But tonight, at the expense of the rest of society, the Liberals and Conservatives decided to protect large multinational tax cheats by introducing a loophole, through which they can continue dodging taxes.

The number of countries experiencing physical violence and threats against workers has risen by 10 percent in just one year, according to the annual ITUC Global Rights Index. Attacks on union members have been documented in fifty-nine countries, fuelling growing anxiety about jobs and wages.

The report shows that corporate interests are being put ahead of the interests of working people in the global economy, with 60 per cent of countries excluding whole categories of workers from labour law.

Closing the gender gap by 25 per cent by the year 2025 has the potential to boost global employment by 189 million and raise global GDP in 2025 by 3.9 per cent, or US$5.8 trillion, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has said.

In its World Employment and Social Outlook report released Wednesday, the ILO said that the achievement of such a goal could also unlock large potential tax revenues.

For example, global tax revenue could increase by US$1.5 trillion given currently projected government revenue shares in GDP, most of it in emerging (US$990 billion) and developed countries (US$530 billion).

"Consequently, policies promoting gender equality could be self-financing," it said.

Europe needs to do more to contribute to the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development that it supports and helped shape. This is the main conclusion of "From Vision to Action," a book compiling innovative research by young authors on a variety of issues, from taxes to energy, trade, and education. This publication is a first product of the Progressive Lab for Sustainable Development, a joint initiative of the Foundation for European Progressive Studies, the Socialists & Democrats group at the European Parliament and the SOLIDAR network.

The Lab argues that the 2030 Agenda "could potentially turn the current unsustainable ‘growth-at-any-cost’ economic model into a sustainable one based on the clear supremacy of human rights over the economic privileges of vested interest groups. This will require measures and policies that tackle the current major global challenges such as growing inequalities; the biased trade and investment strategies and growing corporates’ power; the shrinking funding for development cooperation."

Increasing oil and gas production while at the same time trying to reduce carbon emissions are conflicting priorities, argues a joint study by the University of Victoria, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and the Parkland Institute. The Climate Leadership Plan of the province of Alberta allows to expanding oil sands production by 53 per cent and emissions by 47 per cent above 2014 levels. To compensate and still meet Canada’s Paris Agreement commitments the rest of the Canadian economy should reduce emissions by 47 per cent by 2030. This will be virtually impossible in the time remaining barring an economic collapse.

Three new pipelines have been approved in Canada and a fourth (Energy East) is under review even though oil supply forecasts show that not all are needed. This shows, according to the study that "Canada has no energy strategy beyond liquidating its remaining non-renewable resources as fast as possible to serve the economic interests of governments of the day. What we really need is a comprehensive energy strategy that addresses both the future energy security of Canadians and Canada’s commitments on climate change".

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