On 12 March 2013, the European Commission decided to consult the European Economic and Social Committee on the Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council – An action plan to strengthen the fight against tax fraud and tax evasion. The Committee endorses the Commission's plan and supports its efforts to find practical solutions as regards reducing tax fraud and tax evasion.
Real progress is possible only if the Member States devote more attention to enhancing the efficiency of their tax administrations, equipping them with sufficient financial and human resources, while ensuring better coordination between them. The Committee welcomes the Commission's proposals to blacklist jurisdictions that operate as tax havens, in disregard of standards of good governance in tax matters, and calls for common criteria to be established at EU level for identifying such jurisdictions, so as to prevent this being applied unevenly at national level. Such blacklisting should not be limited to third countries but should also cover jurisdictions belonging to Member States and companies operating in those jurisdictions.The Committee believes that the Commission could complement the blacklisting proposals with sanctions for companies such as exclusion from public contracts, EU funding and state aid.