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Europe holds key to fairer tax laws

By Alasdair Roxburgh | 27 March 2012

In February thousands of Christian Aid campaigners wrote to the UK’s business minister, Norman Lamb, calling on him to support new EU transparency laws for oil, mining and forestry companies.

Flags outside the European Parliament -- Pic: Franky DeMeyer Now we need to keep up the pressure further along the chain ahead of discussions in the European Parliament over the coming weeks.

Email your MEPs now

The proposed laws could help combat corruption and tax dodging in some of the world’s poorest countries.

Judging by a speech Lamb gave in Brussels recently, campaigners’ messages clearly got through to him and we are hopeful that the UK’s position on the EU laws is moving in the right direction.

Last year the European Parliament passed a strong resolution calling for just the kind of financial transparency measures we have been calling for.

But as a result of intense lobbying by oil, mining and forestry companies, there is a danger that MEPs might renege on their resolution and agree to EU transparency laws later this year that are so watered down as to be useless for stopping tax dodging. 

We need MEPs to stand up to corporate lobbying and support strong EU transparency laws for the sake of some of the world’s poorest communities.

Africa's mineral exports are worth nine-times more than the aid it receives. In spite of the huge wealth involved, the countries from which the minerals are extracted are amongst the poorest in the world.

Thanks to corruption and tax dodging, many of the world's poorest are seeing no benefits – just more poverty.

Take action

Act now!

Write to your MEPs now and ensure they know what these proposed laws could mean for the world's poorest.

 About the author

Alasdair Roxburgh

Alasdair Roxburgh is our churches campaigns manager

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