The European Commission gave the Dutch finance ministry an informal warning about its plans to limit a tax break on a new sort of bond to banks, finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem told MPs on Thursday.
Dijsselbloem was reacting to an article in Wednesday’s NRC in which the paper said ING had helped write draft legislation on so-called CoCo bonds and that the tax break for banks could be seen as unfair state support.
‘There was informal contact with the European Commission which was critical of limiting the measure [tax break] to banks,’ Dijsselbloem said in a written parliamentary briefing.
Dijsselbloem did not go into further detail but did say he did not consider the measure to be state support because banks and insurance companies need specific regulations to keep their capital buffers up to scratch.
Dijsselbloem also said it is standard to send draft legislation to interest groups for their attention. He did not deny that large parts of ING’s comments were adopted and said they had been assessed on their merits.
‘Consulting interest groups is increasingly standard procedure,’ he said. ‘This contributes to the shape and the practicality of the legislation.’
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