|Ore di lezione|
Regarding the influence that the European Union exercises on the fiscal policy of its Member States, the aim of the seminar will be analyzing the harmonization process of Member State's fiscal policy.
Taxation is a central topic to national sovereignty and it is very important because is an instrument of economic regulation which can be used to influence consumption, encourage saving or modelling the way in which companies are organised.
In the European Union's single market, Member States need to work together and not to strike out in different directions on tax policy: European Union has the duty to evaluate if Member States' tax measures hamper the free movement of goods, services and capital or if they distort competition.
In the European Union, however, responsibility for tax policy mainly rilies on the Member States, while European Union plays only a subsidiary role on taxes: its aim is not to standardize the national system of compulsory taxes but simply to ensure that they are compatible not only with each other but also with the goals of the Treaty that has established the European Community.
Regarding indirect taxes, article 90 of the EC Treaty prohibits any tax discrimination which would, directly or indirectly, give an advantage to national products over products from other Member States. Article 93 of the Treaty calls for harmonization of turnover taxes, excise duties and other forms of indirect tax, because they affect the free movement of goods and freedom to provide services,
About direct taxes, even thougth the EC Treaty does not specifically call for them to be aligned, but only provides the possibility for Memeber States to stipulate agreement in order to avoid double taxation (art. 293), the harmonization is necessary to remove the obstacles that different direct taxes policy create to the single market.
The substantial lack of legislation in fiscal area, with the exception of indirect taxes, is compensated by the development of Court of Justice case-law. In the field of direct taxation, the Court of Justice has been called upon to rule on the application of the Treaty articles covering the free movement of workers, the right of establishment and freedom to provide services, all of which prohibit any discrimination, including tax discrimination on the basis of nationality.
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