Welcoming Portugal’s strong efforts on the FTT file and urging the tabling of a new legal text

Robin Hood tax

(8 May 2021) We, civil society organisations and trade unions, representing more than 20 million European citizens from 26 EU countries, campaigning for the achievement of a European Financial Transactions Tax (FTT), are writing to H.E. Mr ANTÓNIO COSTA, Prime Minister of Portugal, to express our appreciation and support for Portugal’s important efforts to progress the FTT dossier under its Presidency of the EU Council. In seeking constructively to navigate the way forward on the FTT file, A. Costa government’s actions represent a welcome impetus to proceedings.

We acknowledge the thoughtful and considered approach to working with the 10 Participating Member States under the Enhanced Cooperation Procedure by offering modest but significant improvements to the narrow Franco-German model for the levy, which has been the basis of discussions since mid-2018. Specifically, we support your proposal to include equity derivatives in the taxation of share transactions - to prevent avoidance through trading in substitute products - and to offer the potential for an enlargement of the tax base to other classes of financial instruments through an improved, more robust, review clause.

At a time when countries need to calibrate their policies to the pandemic crisis and its economic consequences, we welcome Portugal’s Compromise Proposal as offering the opportunity to harness the FTT’s enormous potential to generate substantial revenue to benefit the lives of countless citizens, both in the EU and beyond, in the pursuit of jobs, healthcare, sustainable development and an improved environment for all.

To this end, we strongly urge you to respond positively to the requests by a number of Member States for Portugal to produce a legal text reflecting your proposals at the earliest possible time as a basis for the furthering of discussions to find consensus and agreement on the FTT file in the remaining weeks of your Presidency.

See the letter here