Financial Transaction Tax: "We Will Never Give Up"

Leading Euro S&D MPs welcomed the Belgian presidency plan to put the financial transaction tax on the agenda of the G20 in November in Seoul and to work on the technical aspects of the project at EU level.

The announcement was made by Belgian Finance minister Didier Reynders at a workshop held by the S&D Group in the European Parliament on Wednesday 13 October in Brussels on the financial transaction tax. The conference hosted experts and the president of the PES, Poul Nyrup Rasmussen.

Said S&D Euro MP Anni Podimata, author of a report on innovative financing who chaired the event: “FTT is a significant tool to fight against speculation in financial markets, one of the main causes of the recent financial crisis. In that way we give a convincing and efficient response to EU citizens who are very sensitive to this issue. People who are responsible for the collapse of the financial markets should pay their share to repair the damages they have caused. It is a matter of social justice”.

Said German S&D Euro MP and spokesman for Economic and Monetary Affairs Udo Bullmann: “The Belgian presidency commitment to a financial transaction tax is good news. Therefore, we expect the EU Council of ministers to deliver. There are concerns that we could lose the current momentum to move forward by raising too many technical problems. As far as the S&D Group is concerned, we will never give up on this project.”

A Financial transaction tax is a top priority for the Socialists and Democrats. For months now, together with the PES and the Global Progressive Forum, S&D Euro MPs have launched a campaign on this issue; “Regulate Finance Now”.

An FTT at a rate of 0.05% could generate 200 billion euros per year in revenues that could be invested in the economy.

Experts who participated in the S&D workshop included:

  • Dr. Helene Schuberth, Economist and Member of BEIGEWUM (Austria)
  • Sony Kapoor, Managing Director of Re-Define (Rethinking Development, finance and Environment)
  • David Hillman, coordinator of ‘Stamp out poverty’.

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