22 June 2017 — News
Press release – 22 June 2017, Brussels
Accountancy Europe finds the Directive on tax intermediaries the European Commission proposed yesterday a positive step to enhancing transparency and public trust.
CEO Olivier Boutellis-Taft notes: “Professional accountants provide transparency to markets participants and ultimately support trust in society. This proposed Directive contributes to such transparency, so, subject to more analysis, overall we’re comfortable with it.
I think the Commission has it right with the scope of this proposal, as it applies to whomever provides tax services. It is important to make sure this proposal works in practice.
What I do not think will work in the real world is that it makes tax advisors responsible to disclose tax schemes, while the taxpayer is better placed. It would be more logical and more efficient that the taxpayer has the obligation to disclose as he may be the only one to have all the necessary information. The tax advisor has the obligation to advise, maybe including on this disclosure, but the advisor might have a hard time reporting something the client didn’t tell him.”
CEO Olivier Boutellis-Taft concludes: “Today’s complex tax systems would not work without the expertise of professional accountants. They support taxpayers in complying with their obligations and they help tax administrations become more effective by leveraging technology and fighting fraud. All players in the tax system (tax authorities, lawmakers, tax payers, intermediaries) need to take responsibility for improving it: they should work together, not against each other.”