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The EU Commission’s Digital Tax Proposals and its Cross-platform Impact in the EU and the OECD

Wouter Lips

No k2t9j, SocArXiv from Center for Open Science

Abstract: The EU Commission’s directive proposals on corporate taxation of digital multinationals, especially the digital services tax (DST), show the increased assertiveness of the Commission on taxation matters. Both inward and outwards in the parallel OECD negotiations on digital taxation. By drawing on Kingdon’s Multiple Streams Framework, elite interviews and policy documents, I assess the dynamics of the proposal at the EU and OECD. While the DST will fall short in the EU Council due to unanimity requirements, I argue that the Commission actually achieved its pre-prescribed goals. Within the EU, it provided coherency for unilateral DSTs by member states. At the OECD, the proposals increased the threat of uncoordinated unilateral measures. This created a period of uncertainty and pressured laggard states, which helped lead to a tentative window for reform. As such, the proposals are an example of cross-platform policy entrepreneurship by the EU Commission, projecting influence despite unanimity constraints.

Date: 2019-10-09
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DOI: 10.31219/

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