The Chief Minister of Guernsey has welcomed support from
European Parliamentarians and the European
Commission for the positive contribution the Island makes to
the European economy.
Deputy Jonathan Le Tocq, who along with Jersey's Chief
Minister Ian Gorst, met last week with MEPs from the UK, Germany,
Ireland, France, Luxembourg, Denmark and Portugal to discuss the
contribution that the islands' finance sector makes to the
EU's economy and the jobs that it supports, both within the EU
and in the islands.
Deputy Le Tocq said: "The Channel Islands' funds sector
is a conduit for around €200 billion of inward investment into
Europe. That supports growth and jobs across Europe, and is vital
for jobs and economic growth on our islands. We are an important
economic partner of the EU, and that is the message that we have
been delivering in Brussels - that continued access to European
capital markets for the Channel Islands is good for the EU.
"We had the opportunity to discuss that with Commissioner
Jonathan Hill, who is responsible for financial stability,
financial services and capital markets, and with the UK Permanent
Representation in Brussels. I was pleased with the growing
recognition that the Channel Islands is an important economic
partner of the EU."
Senator Gorst said: "The islands' economic contribution
is increasingly well-understood in Brussels. The meetings we had
with the members of the Economic Affairs and Tax Committees, as
well as Lord Hill, demonstrate the importance of continuing to
engage at the senior level of the European Parliament and the
"In our meeting with the Chair of the Tax Committee, Alain
Lamassoure MEP, we were able to offer our expertise and input into
the work that they are doing over the next few months on tax
transparency. Our meetings with Luxembourg's and the
Netherlands' Permanent Representatives to the EU also means
that we have a growing understanding of the emerging priorities of
the next two EU Presidencies, and that they have an understanding
of areas where we can offer input."
The Chief Ministers also met with representatives from Scotland,
the City of London, Andorra, the Faroe Islands, Gibraltar and the
Isle of Man, among others at a briefing event organised by the
Channel Islands Brussels Office.
"Meeting Commissioner Moscovici was important for two
reasons – firstly, to enhance awareness and understanding of
the Channel Islands, and secondly to understand future developments
on tax co-operation. My message was that we are part of the
European mainstream on tax transparency, and should be seen as
partners, not problems, for the Commission. It was heartening to
hear that that is indeed how the Commissioner also sees
Commissioner Moscovici said: "I very much welcome the
active engagement of the Channel Islands in the key initiatives
involved in the fight against tax evasion, fraud and abusive tax
avoidance in which they are important partners of the EU. Their
commitment to the adoption of the Common Reporting Standard on
automatic exchange of information, alongside the EU Member
States, is particularly positive."
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