13 Enhanced cooperation and a financial
transaction tax |
|Draft Council Decision authorising enhanced cooperation in the area of financial transaction tax
|Legal base||Article 329(1) TFEU; consent; QMV
|Document originated||25 October 2012
|Deposited in Parliament||29 October 2012
|Basis of consideration||EM of 29 November 2012
|Previous Committee Report||None
|Discussion in Council||4 December 2012
|Committee's assessment||Politically important
|Committee's decision||Not cleared, further information requested
13.1 In September 2011 the Commission proposed a draft Directive
to establish an EU financial transaction tax (FTT). This was
dependent on unanimous support of the Council and it became obvious
that such support would not be forthcoming.
13.2 Under Article 20 TEU and in accordance with
Articles 326-334 TFEU nine or more Member States may seek Council
authorisation to establish enhanced cooperation amongst themselves
by exercising non-exclusive competences of the EU.
13.3 With this draft Council Decision the Commission
proposes Council authorisation of an enhanced cooperation procedure
for introduction of an FTT. The Member States concerned are Austria,
Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovakia,
Slovenia and Spain. The Commission says that the request of the
Member States meets the conditions for enhanced cooperation and
that the proposed FTT would be largely based on the original proposal,
in terms of scope and objectives.
The Government's view
13.4 The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Greg
Clark) says that:
- the UK will not participate
in the enhanced cooperation FTT; and
- the implications of an enhanced cooperation FTT
cannot be assessed until the detail of the proposal itself is
13.5 Whilst we note the confirmation that the
Government does not wish an FTT for the UK, the Minister does
not tell us whether the Government supports the proposal to authorise
enhanced cooperation by eleven Member States. We should be grateful
for the information on this.
13.6 We should like also to have very soon, the
Government's assessment of the implications of an enhanced cooperation
FTT, particularly on the functioning of the single market.
13.7 Meanwhile the document remains under scrutiny.
But given the recognised importance of this proposal we alert
the Government to the fact that we will be recommending it for
debate once we have the information requested.
78 (33179) 14942/11 + ADDS 1-20: see HC 428-xxxix
(2010-12), chapter 4 (26 October 2011) and HC 428-xli (2010-12),
chapter 10 (9 November 2011). Back