Luxembourg fights back against tax revelations

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Luxembourg fights back against tax revelations

Luxembourg fights back against tax revelations
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Luxembourg has fought back against suggestions of wrongdoing after a report detailed hundreds of secret tax deals struck by multinationals there.

More than 340 companies have transferred profits to Luxembourg, according to leaked documents obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

At an emergency press conference, the country’s finance minister denied any illegality.

“So what has happened here is totally legal, so if something is totally legal, there is no reason to finger point,” said Pierre Gramegna.

The allegations could pile pressure on new Commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, who served as both finance minister and prime minister of Luxembourg.

He stepped down as premier last year before launching his campaign for his current job as the head of the EU executive.

The Commission is already looking at the fiscal affairs of online retailer Amazon in the Grand Duchy.

“The commission will do its job. I won’t intervene on this dossier because the competition commissioner is responsible for it,” said Juncker on November 5.

German Green MEP Sven Gielgold said Juncker has questions to answer.

“So the credibility of Mr Juncker as European President of the Commission is clearly harmed, and damaged, and the big question now is: will he now act as Commission President or as former Prime Minister of Luxembourg, will he clarified what he did in the past? And more importantly will he now come forward with a clear plan against aggressive tax planning by multinational companies in Europe?” he told euronews.

The OECD is working on a data-exchange system to fight tax avoidance.

Luxembourg last year decided scrap offering bank secrecy.

It will automatically exchange tax information from January 1 next year.

ICIJ: Luxembourg Leaks