ECONOMY

EU regulators extend tax probe to entire bloc of 28 countries

European Union competition regulators on Wednesday asked all the 28 countries in the bloc to provide details of tax deals made with companies between 2010 to 2013 as they broadened their investigation into corporate tax avoidance.

“We need a full picture of the tax rulings practices in the EU to identify if and where competition in the single market is being distorted through selective tax advantages,” European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.

The European Commission has been looking into such deals granted by Luxembourg, Ireland, the Netherlands, the UK, Cyprus, Malta and Belgium since June last year.

The EU antitrust enforcer has also asked Belgium, Cyprus, France, Hungary, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the UK to provide information on so-called patent boxes in which tax breaks are linked to patents.

Coffee chain Starbucks Corp, iPhone maker Apple, carmaker Fiat and online giant Amazon are already in the regulatory sight.

[Reuters]