In the Communication dated 28 April 2009, the Commission examines, with regard to direct taxation how good governance in tax matters could be improved within the EU; the instruments that the Community and Member States have at their disposal to promote good governance internationally; and the scope for more coordinated action by the member states, so as to support, streamline and complement action taken in international fora such as the OECD and the UN.
The Commission proposes to speed up work on the review of directives on administrative cooperation between Member States, on mutual assistance in the recovery of taxes and on the taxation of savings, whilst continuing to give priority to eliminating harmful tax practices. And it proposes to include good governance clauses in EU agreements with third countries.
The Economic and Financial Affairs Council held on 9 June 2009 recalled the importance of implementing the good governance tax principles of transparency, exchange of information and fair tax competition as a means of ensuring a level playing field and of combating cross border tax fraud and evasion. The Council welcomed the suggestions of the European Commission’s Communication on promoting good governance in tax matters, is committed to further discuss and promote these principles at international level and towards third countries, welcomed the proposals for the directives on administrative cooperation and recovery and agreed that the functioning of savings taxation should be improved.