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European Council

22/05/2013 - 22/05/2013

Brussels

The main subjects on the European Council's agenda were taxation and energy.

EU leaders seized the political momentum created by fiscal constraints and made progress on a number of taxation issues, such as tax evasion and tax fraud.

A number of files which had been at a standstill for years were unblocked and clear deadlines set for results. Priorities were automatic exchange of information, tackling VAT fraud, elimination of harmful tax practices and fighting money laundering.

After a strategic debate, leaders stated that the EU's energy policy aims at providing both households and companies with affordable and competitively priced energy in a safe and sustainable manner.

They reaffirmed previously agreed objectives and defined priorities and deadlines related to thecompletion of the internal energy marketinterconnections, investments, the diversification of Europe's energy supply and energy efficiency.

European Council Conclusions

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The European heads of state and government focused on two main subjects: energy and taxation.

On energy, the leaders emphasised that supply of affordable and sustainable energy is crucial to support competitiveness, jobs and growth. They agreed on a series of priorities:

  • the internal energy market should be completed by 2014 and interconnections developed in order for all member states to be connected to European gas and electricity networks by 2015
  • significant investments in new and intelligent energy infrastructure are necessary to secure the uninterrupted supply of energy at affordable prices to households and companies
  • the EU must intensify the diversification of its energy supply and develop local energy resources in order to ensure security of supply and reduce its external energy dependency
  • work on the impact of high energy prices and costs must be taken forward. This includes work on energy efficiency and innovative financing methods.

 

On taxation, the leaders focused on effective ways to combat tax evasion and tax fraud. It is important to protect revenues and ensure public confidence in the fairness and effectiveness of tax systems.

The European Council called for rapid progress on a number of issues, setting automatic exchange of information as a priority, also at international level.

Other issues discussed were:

  • taxation of savings income
  • fighting VAT fraud, aggressive tax planning and profit shifting
  • elimination of harmful tax measures
  • combating money laundering, in the EU and globally
  • challenges of taxation in the digital economy.

 

They also welcomed the agreement reached by the Ecofin Council on a negotiating mandate for strengthened savings tax agreements with Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Andorra and San Marino.

Remarks by Herman Van Rompuy

Articles

- EU leaders agree to step up the fight against tax fraud

EU leaders seized the political momentum created by fiscal constraints and made progress on a number of taxation issues, such as tax evasion and tax fraud.

A number of files which had been at a standstill for years were unblocked and clear deadlines set for results. Priorities were automatic exchange of information, tackling VAT fraud, elimination of harmful tax practices and fighting money laundering.

- Leaders discuss EU energy policy priorities

After a strategic debate, leaders stated that the EU's energy policy aims at providing both households and companies with affordable and competitively priced energy in a safe and sustainable manner.

They reaffirmed previously agreed objectives and defined priorities and deadlines related to the completion of the internal energy market, interconnections, investments, the diversification of Europe's energy supply and energy efficiency.

Related documents

- Summit photo directory 

Videos

- Final press conference

- Best of arrivals

- More videos

Photos

- Photo gallery 

European Council meetings are chaired by Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council.

They take place in Brussels, in the Justus Lipsius building with the assistance of the General Secretariat of the Council.

 


Blue Arrows

European Council
Justus Lipsius building
Rue de la Loi 175
1048 Brussels

Blue Arrows

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