Tax harmonisation = high taxes

November 04, 2008 6:02 PM

The German Government are apparently threatening to veto an EU Commission proposal to extend member states' rights to reduce VAT on a variety of services (yes, you really do need unanimous EU permission to cut taxes on haircuts).


The fact that we have sacrificed our right to set our own tax levels on so many services is outrageous enough, but the reason the Germans have given for their obstruction is very revealing. The German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck said:

I am very reluctant to extend the reduced VAT rates as it makes no sense in terms of harmonising tax rates in Europe

So now it's official - as we've always said, EU tax harmonisation equals higher taxes all round. The idea that Britain can secure a low tax economy by handing over our tax sovereignty and then persuading everyone else that it's a good idea is total, utter and unadulterated bunkum.

The German Government are apparently threatening to veto an EU Commission proposal to extend member states' rights to reduce VAT on a variety of services (yes, you really do need unanimous EU permission to cut taxes on haircuts).


The fact that we have sacrificed our right to set our own tax levels on so many services is outrageous enough, but the reason the Germans have given for their obstruction is very revealing. The German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck said:

I am very reluctant to extend the reduced VAT rates as it makes no sense in terms of harmonising tax rates in Europe

So now it's official - as we've always said, EU tax harmonisation equals higher taxes all round. The idea that Britain can secure a low tax economy by handing over our tax sovereignty and then persuading everyone else that it's a good idea is total, utter and unadulterated bunkum.

Latest Blogs:

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

We're hiring a Campaign Manager - Digital

11:37 AM 16, Jan 2017 The TaxPayers' Alliance

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Increases in precepts are not the answer

3:30 PM 13, Jan 2017 James Price

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

We must all stand up for a free press

10:39 AM 06, Jan 2017 Dia Chakravarty

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Want to be our new Policy Analyst?

12:52 PM 05, Jan 2017 The TaxPayers' Alliance

TaxPayers' Alliance Icon

Are rail fares too high?

3:38 PM 03, Jan 2017 Alex Wild