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Vienna, 22.08.2017 Finance Minister Schelling at meeting of German-speaking Finance Ministers in Switzerland Traditional exchange on current financial and fiscal-policy topics Austria assumes pioneering role in the context of international measures for the prevention of profit shifting and international tax fraud

This year, on 22 August, German-Speaking Finance Ministers Hans Jörg Schelling (Austria), Wolfgang Schäuble (Germany), Pierre Gramegna (Luxembourg) and Adrian Hasler (Liechtenstein) will be meeting in Winterthur and Zurich for their traditional exchange at the invitation of Ueli Maurer (Switzerland); within the framework of the annual meeting, they will be discussing current financial and fiscal-policy matters, economic and political developments, and international regulatory and tax issues. Also under discussion will be challenges posed to the authorities by digitalization, which is increasing also in the financial sector, in areas such as innovation promotion, security, customer protection and taxation.

Back at the beginning of July, Austrian Finance Minister Schelling had presented to the European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Pierre Moscovici, the Austrian initiative on European and international measures to prevent profit shifting and international tax fraud, as well as raising the issue at his latest meeting in Vienna with the French Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Bruno Le Maire. "Through standardized tax bases and a common strategy in the fight against tax fraud at EU level, we will succeed in closing the loopholes. At European level, discussions have been going on for a long time already; now is the time for implementation. Here, Austria has a pioneering role, and, at a national level, has already done a great deal," declared Schelling.

Schelling continued: "However, in order to be able to take yet more effective action against tax avoidance and tax evasion, we do need a European and international response," adding that, for this reason, the European Union needed a common strategy, in particular with regard to a standard assessment basis for corporation tax. "Austria wishes to foster greater international cooperation in terms of tax fraud and international tax avoidance practices and, particularly within the framework of the EU Council Presidency, in the autumn of 2018, will seek to drive measures on this topic further forward," he concluded.