Paris, December 22, 2014
The Minister of Finance and Public Accounts, the Minister of the Economy, Industry and the Digital Sector and the Minister of State for European Affairs presented the results of the European Council.
The European Council endorsed the Investment Plan proposed by the new Commission. It called for the swift establishment of a European Fund for Strategic Investments. This fund must enable €315 billion of new public and private investment to be mobilized between 2015 and 2017. It will enable specific projects with genuine European added value to be financed in areas such as transport infrastructure, the energy transition, the digital sector, training, research and innovation. It will be fully geared towards the European Union’s growth and competitiveness. As requested by France, special emphasis will be put on the need for the first projects to get under way very quickly, as early as 2015.
The establishment of the fund will be accompanied by a regulatory dimension aimed at boosting the EU’s attractiveness for production, investment and innovation.
As France was requesting, the European Council emphasized the need to step up efforts to combat tax avoidance and optimization. It called on the Commission to swiftly present a proposal on automatic information exchange relating to tax rulings in the EU. This is an important element of a comprehensive strategy sought by France and requiring common rules on three major aspects, as the French, German and Italian finance ministers requested in their letter to the Commission on 28 November: widespread transparency, combating schemes organized to avoid effective taxation, and measures to deal with third states and countries which also contribute to optimization through their opacity and lack of taxation. (…)./.