The EU’s Competitiveness Council is to meet on November 28, 2019, to agree a general approach on a legislative proposal to release to the public information on multinational enterprises’ tax affairs.

The meeting follows the passage of a resolution by members of the European Parliament on October 24, 2019, calling on EU member states to agree proposals that would require the public disclosure of country-by-country reports.

MEPs passed the resolution on public CbC reporting by 572 votes to 42, with 21 abstentions. MEPs said that agreeing a position would allow talks between member states and the European Parliament to begin, with the aim of reaching a final text on the proposed rules.

Under current rules, multinational groups located in the EU or with operations in the EU with total consolidated revenue of EUR750m (USD833.4m) or more are required to file CbC reports. The report must include information for every tax jurisdiction in which the group does business, covering the amount of revenue, profit before income tax, income tax paid and accrued, number of employees, stated capital, retained earnings, and tangible assets.

According to MEPs, making the information public would boost transparency and discourage companies from shifting profits to low-tax jurisdictions.

The MEPs’ resolution also called on the Finnish presidency of the European Council to “recommence and prioritize work” on the public CbC reporting proposal. It welcomed the incoming Commission’s support for the prompt adoption of the proposal.

Speaking to Parliament on behalf of the current Finnish Council presidency on October 24, Tytti Tuppurainen told MEPs that work on the proposal is advancing and that more meetings are planned. He added that, “on the Council’s side, we will still probably need more time to clarify our position.”