On 17 December 2018, the European Commission presented the first report on the overview and assessment of the statistics and information on the automatic exchanges in the field of direct taxation. The European Commission through the report urges Members States to improve the way they collect and exploit the data they exchange.
According to the report, EU transparency rules led to Member States compiling and sharing data from 8.7 million financial accounts with a total value of EUR 2,900 billion in 2017. Moreover, Member States also exchanged information concerning nearly 16 million taxpayers, related to incomes and capital amounting to over EUR 120 billion.
The report revealed that the AEOI programme increased the transparency of information on advance tax rulings and advance pricing arrangements. Almost 18,000 rulings were recorded in the central directory in 2017 compared to hardly any being spontaneously exchanged in the years up to 2015.
Even though statistically AEOI shows a positive trend in exchanging information, the commission pointed out that several Member States still make very limited use of the information they receive. Therefore, as way forward, the commission through the report urges Member States to make better use of data received via AEOI by implementing the following strategy:
The commission also requires Member States to review the quality of the information they collected and provide feedback to the entities (e.g. financial institutions) which supply information for AEOI. As such, the AEOI programme will be more effective and efficient.
The EU Fiscalis programme for tax cooperation can provide support for both improving AEOI data quality and making sure information exchanged is used efficiently and effectively to create a fairer tax system for the benefit of Europe and its citizens.
Source: European Commission
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