"Yes, we made it!": Olaf Scholz feiert sich in Washington für die Globale Mindeststeuer

14 Oct. 2021 10:57 o’clock

On the occasion of the autumn meeting of the International Monetary Fund, Olaf Scholz, still in the office of Federal Minister of Finance, traveled to the USA. In Washington he was celebrated for the global minimum tax. However, he was (still) denied an appointment with the US President in the White House.

Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz (SPD) is currently attending the meeting of the International Monetary Fund IMF in Washington. It’s about the global vaccine supply, the economic recovery from the corona pandemic, combating the climate crisis and global minimum taxation. Scholz was congratulated on his party’s victory in the federal election and celebrated the global minimum tax as his success.

The Scholz plan seems to be working: with a vague party program and a traffic light in the Chancellery

All internationally active companies, regardless of the country in which they have their headquarters, are to pay a total of 15 percent for the global minimum tax from 2023. A tax regulation is not made for the countries. Large corporations are taxed where they make high profits.

This new levy will also flush urgently needed money into the German federal budget. The ifo Institute expects revenues of five to six billion euros. The SPD speaks of a “tax revolution”, while the EU countries Ireland and Hungary opposed it. The US government under Joe Biden initially had reservations about the project and asked the EU to put the plans on hold. The decision to introduce a global minimum tax was finally taken at a G20 summit in Venice.

Scholz declared in Washington:

“We worked very hard to make this happen. Yes, we did it!”

He then had himself photographed in front of the White House with his Canadian counterpart Chrystia Freeland:

However, there was a demonstration in the background. The protesters interrupted opinion of the German finance minister in front of the press. Scholz, who could hardly be heard acoustically because of the loud heckling, said:

“We will succeed in ending the downward competition with ever lower corporate tax rates, which has burdened the community of states so much in recent decades. With the international minimum taxation of large companies, we will also have considerable additional income worldwide, but just also specifically in Germany. And at the same time it was possible to reach an agreement on better taxation of highly profitable, globally operating companies and to distribute these taxes well. This is particularly about the digital platform companies. “

Companies like Amazon and Google in particular had barely paid taxes for many years and instead shifted their profits to tax havens. Criticism of Scholz’s project of the global minimum tax came from the CDU. This will not create fair taxation, on the contrary, said the CDU MP and financial policy spokeswoman for the parliamentary group, Antje Tillmann.

After pressure from the US government: EU puts plans for minimum tax for corporations on holdAfter pressure from the US government: EU puts plans for minimum tax for corporations on hold

There was no meeting between US President Joe Biden and Olaf Scholz. He is not yet Federal Chancellor. The doors of the White House were therefore closed to him.

Tomorrow, October 15, 2021, Germany will find out whether there will be coalition negotiations between the SPD, FDP and the Greens. With the global minimum tax, the FDP wants to show Scholz that additional income is possible without tax increases. The Greens hold a party conference at the weekend. They will vote on the eight-page paper that the three parties are said to have written last Friday.

Scholz is optimistic about his future. He is certain that the explorations will go well and that the new government will be in place by Christmas. The SPD man as Federal Chancellor should then ring in the new year 2022 with a speech on German television.

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