A string of prominent opposition MPs are calling on the cabinet to come clean about deals between the tax office and multinational companies.
Jesse Klaver (GroenLinks), Arnold Merkies (SP), Peter Omtzigt (CDA) and Carola Schouten (ChristenUnie) have written an opinion piece in the Volkskrant saying parliament is currently not able to determine if deals struck with companies like Google and Starbucks are fair and within the letter of the law. One of parliament’s jobs is to ‘control’ cabinet actions.
For example, American coffee chain Starbucks has come under repeated fire for the complicated constructions it uses to reduce its tax bills, partly based on the Dutch zero tax rate on royalties.
In their plea for change, the party financial spokesmen also point out that Disney paid just 0.25% tax between 2009 and 2013 while Amazon has paid just 1% tax over its European earnings.
The European Commission is currently investigating the tax deals with Starbucks to find out if they are effectively unfair state support from the Dutch government.
‘This is a serious case and it would be good if parliament could for once have a detailed look at what agreements have been made,’ the MPs say.
Tax minister Erik Wiebes said earlier he did not expect there would be any problems stemming from the Brussels investigation.