Today the European Parliament approved my report aimed at strengthening EU laws to fight aggressive tax avoidance and evasion. The European Commission now has one year to turn the recommendations in the report into concrete proposals for new laws or they will need to explain their actions to the European Parliament.
The report has been voted for by almost all political parties in the European Parliament, except for British Conservatives.
I find it staggering that they can keep seeking headlines by claiming they care about aggressive tax avoidance and evasion, yet whenever there is an actual opportunity to do something about the problem, they vote it down..
Now that the report has been passed by the parliament, we can set about putting pressure on the European Commission to make sure it is fully implemented. The report is split into three sections: transparency, coordination and convergence; each with a series of recommendations.
Unless we work with our European colleagues to combat unfair tax practices we will achieve nothing. David Cameron needs to talk to his MEPs and make clear to them that aggressive tax avoidance and evasion cost the UK economy billions of pounds every year that is desperately needed to help fund infrastructure and help the national finances.
By getting the Commission to adopt these recommendations we can make a difference in areas where the Tories refuse to take action. Only by working with other European States can we get to the root of the problem of people hiding their money and taxable profits abroad.
In an era where the UK government is telling people to tighten their purse strings and pay their share, 'it is not fair to let some multinational businesses get away with contributing next to nothing.