Public Matters wins FD Gazellen entrepreneur award!

Public Matters has been elected as a FD Gazelle! Awarded for the 19th time by the Financieel Dagblad, the FD Gazellen Awards are one of the most prestigious awards for the fastest growing companies in the Netherlands. To win this award companies must meet certain selected criteria, in recognition of their rapid, successful growth.

Public Matters’ growth is mainly due to our fantastic Team. From our offices in The Hague and Brussels, our 32 expert and results-driven colleagues work hard to make a difference for our clients, providing public affairs and strategic communications support.

Our growth is due to other factors as well. More then ever, organizations seem aware of the importance of communicating effectively with governments and other stakeholders – which became even more evident during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, governments often play a leading role in developments such as the eenergy transition and digitalization – making advocacy towards governments a priority for many organizations. As this requires specific expertise, Public Matters is often asked to provide support.

‘This is of course a fantastic token of appreciation. It’s our ambition to continue our growth by raising the bar even higher. The further development of our Team and our international focus play a key role in this,’ says Bas Batelaan (Managing Partner).

Public Matters welcomes two new colleagues

In early October, Public Matters welcomed two new colleagues: Dauphine Sulzer joins as Account Executive and Jacob Cloo as Consultant.

 

About Dauphine

Dauphine obtained her master’s degree in European Policy at the University of Amsterdam and wrote her thesis on lobbying around European climate policy. For the past two years, Dauphine gained experience in the Public Affairs profession as a research intern and junior consultant. At Public Matters, Dauphine will focus mainly on healthcare and tech.

 

About Jacob

In recent years, Jacob worked both in Brussels and The Hague in Public Affairs and strategic communications for pharmaceutical and MedTech organisations. Before that, Jacob obtained his master’s degree in European Union Studies from Leiden University. At Public Matters, Jacob will focus on sustainability and healthcare.

 

Welcome Dauphine and Jacob, we wish you the best of luck!

The Integrated Healthcare Agreement – where do we go from here?

After almost 6 months of negotiations, which ultimately came down to the last few days, an agreement on the Integrated Healthcare Agreement (IZA) was reached on 16 September 2022. It is the first time that the cabinet has concluded a (general) agreement with (almost) all parties involved with curative care. No fewer than thirteen of the fourteen parties ultimately signed, except for the general practitioners (LHV). Although their support is decisive for the success of the agreement, this decision does not mean that the impact of the agreement is limited.

 

Appropriate care

The Integrated Healthcare Agreement is set to run for four years. During this period it will gradually work toward appropriate use of care, with the goal of organizing care closer to (where possible) and with more time for the patient. Healthcare parties are committed to more regional cooperation, strengthening primary care, focusing on prevention and better working conditions for healthcare professionals. All this is driven by the idea of better managing and absorbing the increasing demand for care.

 

Bittersweet ending

Although these concerns about the future of healthcare are being voiced sector-wide, parties also want to be able to trust each other on the perspective offered. For the time being, concrete (financial) guarantees seem to be lacking in many areas. The outcome was thus bittersweet: the agreement was reached, but without the general practitioners. A “pity,” according to Health Ministers Helder and Kuipers, given their crucial role in the implementation of the agreement.

 

The agreement threatens to become part of a previously observed trend, which is that the healthcare debate tends to focus on general themes rather than pay close attention to the details. This threatens to overlook the “how” question. Only with concrete commitments can the agreement actually be enforced. However, partly in view of the consensus reached on the content, it would be a shame not to take the agreement seriously. There is undoubtedly still much to be done in terms of implementation, and with the momentum generated in the final phase of the negotiations there are plenty of opportunities to continue working on this in the coming period. Stakeholders, in that regard, have actually benefited from the resulting friction for three reasons:

 

1. Opportunities for signatories?

Thirteen out of fourteen parties who have managed to unite their individual interests and express confidence in an integrated approach. That in itself is quite an achievement, since previous agreements were concluded by individual sectors. Broad support for the content is ultimately the first step towards continuing the conversation about implementation. And this is happening: The parties have agreed to continue speaking every three months. The importance of these follow-up talks is emphasized by the lack of the LHV’s signature. It holds up a mirror to health insurers and the cabinet: now it’s time to come up with concrete guarantees. And with expected effect, after all: it is clearly in everyone’s interest not to let the agreement turn into a failure. Because what does that say about the future of healthcare?

 

2. Opportunities in the House of Representatives?

Meanwhile, the House of Representatives can also make its voice heard, and it has several opportunities to do so in the coming period. For example, next Thursday, September 29, the Commission will discuss the long-awaited cabinet response to the Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR) report “Choosing Sustainable Care. People Resources and Social Support”, followed by another separate Commission debate on the Integrated Healthcare Agreement on October 12. A week later, the House will debate on the recently presented healthcare budget for 2023. MPs will have the opportunity to sharpen the financial picture and discuss how for example the 300 million euros for stimulating cooperation within curative care, as was announced on Budget Day, will be spent.

 

3. Opportunities for advocates?

At the same time, the attention to the Integrated Healthcare Agreement, be it positive or negative, offers parties who were not directly involved in the negotiations a relevant cause to make their objections known and to clarify how certain developments may be at odds with the agreements made. Take for example the recent closures of emergency rooms or groups of patients who may be left out in the cold due to changes in the basic package. This way, they keep the signatories on their toes where promises to patients and care providers and the needs of practice may clash. And only then the transformation to appropriate care will truly be characterized by an integrated approach.

 

Conclusion

Time will have to tell whether the cooperation on paper will be able to take shape in practice. This not only requires a discussion about financially securing the agreements made, but ultimately also about how an integrated approach fits within the current healthcare system. The past has shown that cooperation across healthcare domains is not always easy. The agreement is a step in the right direction to enable parties to realize this cooperation. All the more important to get serious about its further implementation.

UPDATE DUTCH POLITICS: Government in crisis mode on Budget Day

On Budget Day (known as ‘Prinsjesdag’), the third Tuesday of September, the Dutch government announces its plans and ambitions for the coming year. Traditionally, the King is first to present the plans in his annual King’s Speech (‘Troonrede’).

This year’s budget discussions in the run-up to Budget Day were unconventional. As the budget plan is usually finalized well before its presentation, the cabinet now continued negotiations until Budget Day – mostly focusing on measures to mitigate the sky-high energy prices. Due to the complexity of the relations between the 4 different parties in the governing coalition these negotations took longer than wanted.

After yesterday’s presentation of the government budget for 2023 by the Minister of Finance (Ms. Sigrid Kaag), a cycle of parliamentary debates, lasting until the beginning of December will follow. The budgets of all ministries must be approved by the House of Representatives and the Senate by 1 January 2023.

A key element of this year’s King’s Speech was the current distrust (towards politics) and feelings of uncertainty in Dutch society. Referring to how the Netherlands tackled historic crises, such as the reconstruction of the Netherlands after World War II, the King advocated for gradually regaining trust and hope – through collaboration. In this light, the King emphasized the important role of governmental organisations, such as the tax authority.

Highlights of the King’s Speech & Government budget 2023:

  • The economic outlook for 2023 is uncertain, mostly due to rising energy and commodity prices. However, the economy is expected to grow by 4.6% in 2022, and by 1.5% in 2023.
  • The government is counting on €366.4 billion in revenues and €395 billion in expenditures, yielding a budget deficit of €28.6 billion.
  • National debt will decrease from 49.8% of GDP to 49.5% percent of GDP, amounting to €500 billion.
  • Inflation is at a historic high (13.6% – August 2022 compared to August 2021).
  • Unemployment is at a historic low (3.8%) – which is related to the relatively low average number of working hours (32.1 hours/week) – which is the lowest in the EU.
  • To protect purchasing power, an exceptionally large package of €17.2 billion (of which €5 billion is structural) is presented. Part of this package are measures that specifically support vulnerable groups and middle-income earners.
  • To shield consumers from surging energy prices, a temporary price cap on gas and electricity – from 1 January 2023 onwards – will be introduced. In addition, for the extension of the reduction of the excise duty on fuel an amount of €1.2 billion is reserved.
  • The revenue of gas companies in the Netherlands – which is related to the high energy prices – will be heavily taxed, raising €2.8 billion in 2023 and 2024.
  • The CO2-tax for industry will be changed – by amending the reduction factor.
  • The lower corporate income tax rates will be increased and the threshold will be narrowed.
  • The 30%-ruling (wage tax) for expats will be limited. The cabinet proposes to impose a maximum to the ruling as of 2024 (the so-called Balkenende-norm or the Wet normering topinkomens (WNT)-norm, which is EUR 216.000 in 2022, but is expected to increase in 2024).
  • The cabinet has reserved additional budgets for education and equal opportunities (€2.8 billion), housing and infrastructure (€7.5 billion), the future of rural areas (€24 billion) and climate change (€35 billion) in the coming years.
  • Following the coalition agreement €3 billion is invested in defense (of which €1.9 billion in 2023). In addition, the government added €2 billion in the context of the war in Ukraine – which means that the Netherlands will meet the NATO standard of 2% in 2024 – 2025.

The full King’s speech (in English) can be viewed through this link.

What to expect from the European Commission this year? Takeaways of the SOTEU 2022

On Wednesday, Ursula Von der Leyen delivered the annual State of the Union Adress in the European Parliament. In her hour-long speech, she outlined an elaborate range of projects and initiatives that will be the focus of the European Commission for the coming year. The speech was gripped by the influence of the Russian invasion in Ukraine, highlighted even more by the Commissioners’ clothes – all dressed in yellow and blue.

Strong Words

Most apparent of this year’s State of the Union were the strong and definitive statements of the President of the European Commission. Some analysts described the speech as a ‘real war time speech’, symbolized by the presence of Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska whose name was addressed several times in the European Parliament. Not only did Von der Leyen explicitly show solidarity with Ukraine and other neighboring countries, she also directly referenced the closing of the research center of the VU Amsterdam in the context of the atrocities against the Uyghur population in China.

Energy

Von der Leyen did not mince her words about Putin having started the EU energy crisis, even before the invasion in Ukraine with Gazprom, the Russian state-owned gas supplier, reducing gas supply to the EU. She was proud about the EU already succeeding in reducing its dependency on Russian gas and will continue to do so. As expected, she called for not just temporary solutions to the energy crisis but a permanent paradigm shift.

Short-term

In the short-term the EU will focus on keeping energy affordable for the many households and businesses that rely on it. In this context, Von der Leyen introduced a price cap on the revenue of companies that generate electricity with low costs and asked fossil fuel business for a solidarity contribution, which would be distributed across society. Also, households and businesses have been addressed to reduce electricity consumption by 10% during peak hours. The implementation timeline of these measures remains unclear and is hard determine considering the different structures of the electricity market in EU countries.

Long-term

In the long-term the EU will focus on renewable energy production as stipulated in the Green Deal. In this light, Von der Leyen introduced a Task Force to investigate how we can have reasonably lower prices for gas. Referring to the Commission’s REPowerEU proposal that aims to produce both 10 million tons of domestic renewable hydrogen production and 10 million tons of H2 imports by 2030, Von der Leyen raised specific attention to hydrogen and introduced the European Hydrogen Bank. This Bank will use money from the Innovation Fund to contribute 3 billion euros to construct a hydrogen economy. A sign that the European Commission is committed to develop an EU hydrogen market, possibly alongside investments done via the IPCEI instrument.

Securing critical resources

With the current energy crisis, comes investment. Von der Leyen highlighted the importance of Next Generation EU called for investments both in sustainability and to invest sustainably and. Also, the question of access to raw materials was elaborately discussed. The President went as far as to say that access to raw materials such as lithium and rare earths would become more important than oil and gas. Therefore, the EU would need to avoid becoming independent to one country which the EU currently aims to realize by the Global Gateway plan. Also, Von der Leyen announced the upcoming Critical Raw Materials Act, that would hopefully follow the “success of the Chips Act”, of which the legislative process is still ongoing.

Health

While health policy is generally not one of the competences of the EU under the Treaties, this year’s SOTEU made references to the EU’s efforts in the field, a sign of the Commission’s ambitions to become more important here. Von der Leyen praised the initiative of two production facilities for vaccines in Africa and discussed similar initiatives in Latin America. Beyond the references to Covid-19, she specifically addressed the mental health challenges a large portion of the EU population is facing. She introduced a new initiative on Mental Health, which will focus on the accessibility, affordability, and appropriateness of support.

Von der Leyen closed the speech with a long-awaited call for a new European Convention, which was met with a loud applause.

Which companies will be switched off from gas? And how is that determined?

That there is a gas crisis is clear to everyone. However, the picture becomes more diffuse when the crisis reaches its peak. How should the Netherlands deal with gas shortages and can vital infrastructure be saved? Rob Jetten – the minister for Energy and Climate Policy – will come up with an advice on these matters and has already started consultations with stakeholders. The exact outcome of this advice is not yet known.

The action framework to address a gas crisis is determined by the Gas Protection and Recovery Plan – based on an EU regulation – and includes eleven measures. At some point, if an emergency phase has been declared, non-protected customers may be forced to switch off from gas supplies in order to save protected customers. Protected customers are households and organisations with a social function such as hospitals, and non-protected customers are, for instance,the chemicals and metals industry.

If the current Gas Protection and Recovery Plan is followed, non-protected customers can be switched off based on consumption volume: the largest customer switched off first, then the second, and so on. This takes no account of social and economic consequences because, as the plan itself states, criteria to make a ranking would be subjective. Whether this will continue to be the case is under discussion.

At EU level, it was decided this summer to update the national gas crisis plans. Consideration was given to the possible disruption of society and the economy if certain industries were to be switched-off from gas. This is explicitly an advice – knowing that there are no easy solutions – which means that the Netherlands does not have to follow this consideration.

The minister for Energy and Climate Jetten is currently working on the further operationalisation of the Gas Protection and Recovery Plan. Part of this is determining who exactly are protected and non-protected customers, and in what order non-protected customers will be switched off, if necessary. This could lead to much discussion among stakeholders. After all, switching off will be a disaster. Not only for the company in question, but it also impacts other parts of the supply chain. Several companies have recently stopped production due to extreme energy costs. This casts a shadow ahead.

Minister Jetten has stated that he prefers to focus on voluntary gas savings. One important way of doing this is to develop a gas tender – one of the eleven measures. In this tender, companies can indicate in advance the price at which they wish to renounce consumption of a specified quantity of gas for a specified period. The details are still being discussed. The review of the entire plan is expected to be completed by 1 October. It will then be debated in the House, which may offer room for refining.

The Netherlands is currently still in the first phase of the gas crisis, the early warning phase. The gas reserves are at the desired level and gas consumption is reducing. Nevertheless, a sense of urgency is in order. History shows that the course of crises is difficult to predict. In addition, any ranking of industries may be a blueprint for other crises. It is therefore very important for the companies in question to anticipate these developments. This means that they need to be well informed about the latest developments. It can then be decided how they can provide input into the decision-making process – to ensure that their voice is heard.

Machiavelli kicks off the Dutch political year with MP Kuiken (PvdA – Labour) and MP Paternotte (D66 – Liberal Democrats)

True to tradition, the Machiavelli Foundation kicked off the Dutch political year on the morning of Tuesday 6 September in the – brand new – Press Centre Nieuwspoort. Party chairs MP Attje Kuiken (PvdA – Labour) and MP Jan Paternotte (D66 – Liberal Democrats) looked ahead to the coming political year, led by Machiavelli board members Remco Meijer (Volkskrant) and Fons Lambie (RTL News). In April, Attje Kuiken took over the party leadership of the opposition party PvdA from Lilianne Ploumen. Jan Paternotte became party leader in January, when Sigrid Kaag and Rob Jetten became ministers in the Rutte IV cabinet on behalf of D66.

In her opening speech, MP Kuiken stressed the importance of taking action before the winter. Now that the energy bills are “skyrocketing”, the PvdA and GroenLinks (Greens) want to present new proposals for this year this week. MP Paternotte emphasised that the cabinet must now “get on with it” and not postpone politically sensitive choices. This requires “political courage”, according to him.

Before Christmas, MP Kuiken foresees that the cabinet will fall. She thinks that the Netherlands has entered a “national burn-out”. “Nothing is possible anymore. Listless, despondent. Short fuses, distrust. According to her, this cabinet lacks creativity. On the other hand, she does not hope for new elections and a new – long – period of coalition formation. As far as MP Paternotte is concerned, elections will not be held again until 2025, with Kaag as the list leader for D66.

Public Matters supports the Machiavelli Foundation and has been its main sponsor since 2010. The Machiavelli Foundation is committed to public communication.

How do we manage the large flow of policy documents?

Since 1 July 2021, the cabinet has made the underlying departmental decision notes public. This was prompted by the report ‘Unprecedented Injustice’ by the parliamentary committee inquiry into childcare benefit, which stated that the provision of information to parliament must be more adequate, open and complete. It is part of a trend where more and more policy documents are made public. This flow of data must ensure transparency in policy choices. For anyone who follows ‘The Hague’ for work, however, this is becoming an ever greater challenge.

It seems that not only are ministerial letters being written, external investigations being carried out and underlying policy documents being released more and more frequently – the volume is also increasing. Digitalisation has played a huge part in this over the past ten years. This also means that the now twenty political parties in the House of Representatives have quite a bit of work to do to analyse this and to monitor the government. The same applies to the media – which also have a monitoring function – and interest groups. Sometimes, a decision made in The Hague turns out to be impossible for a municipality, organisation or company. Due to the large stream of letters, memorandums, parliamentary questions and reports, it happens more and more often that documents are not read or read too late.

Robots do the work?

To keep track of this flow of documents and to have a filter on it, we increasingly leave the work to artificial intelligence, including some algorithms. They are the first filter and make the flow of data manageable for those who know what to look for.

Thanks to the efforts of the Open State Foundation, more attention is being paid to access to policy documents. Municipalities still use a patchwork of systems, but even there more and more documents are public. The House of Representatives itself has also ensured that all documents are easily accessible and that debates can be followed and watched online. This transparency and open data also lead in this case to even more documents and even more data. Using algorithms, we can make this somewhat manageable, but therein lies a risk.

Context

The risk of political monitoring with artificial intelligence is the lack of context. Not only the context of the policy memorandum or the parliamentary letter, but also of the user himself. The user’s own situation is also subject to topicality, as a result of which news that was previously not interesting (and which was therefore not clicked on) suddenly becomes very important.

All tools that help make large data streams manageable can be a good addition for anyone following the political arena. In ‘Brussels’ everyone knows POLITICO. But be aware of the limitations of automated tools. There is always a blind spot, just like with humans. That’s why Public Matters has chosen a combination in which digital tools (such as InfoMatters) help to filter information, but a consultant always pays attention to the ‘Brussels’ or ‘The Hague’ context and the client’s current affairs. This way, we not only share the information, but also advise directly when action is needed.

Would you like to know more about the monitoring of ‘The Hague’ & ‘Brussels’ developments and our unique system InfoMatters, with which you are always up to date with political-administrative developments? Please contact us or visit this page for more information.

Public Matters temporarily changes address due to renovations

In the coming months, the Public Matters office in The Hague will be made more sustainable through renovation and insulation.

From 22 August 2022 until the end of October 2022 we will be temporarily located at another office. This office is located at Bezuidenhoutseweg 97B and just two doors away from our current office. Visitors can still use our parking spaces.

Reform of international tax system not a done deal

Led by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), 136 countries that together represent about 90 percent of the total global economy reached an agreement on reforming the international tax system (the “OECD agreement”) in October 2021 after years of negotiations. Among other things, the countries – including the Netherlands – agreed that large multinationals will pay at least 15 percent profit tax, regardless of the country in which they are based. Although politicians indicated that they wanted to implement this agreement quickly, progress is currently faltering staggering on all sides.

This blog outlines what has happened since October 2021. Furthermore, it examines the most recent policy developments and their implications. Can we expect any changes soon, or will the ambitious OECD agreement fizzle out?

 

An important milestone

The OECD is a socio-economic partnership of almost 40 countries, including the Netherlands. Together with the G20, the OECD has established the so-called OECD/G20 “Inclusive Framework on BEPS” (“Inclusive Framework”). This consists of more than 135 countries and jurisdictions to encourage cooperation on “Base Erosion and Profit Shifting” (“BEPS”). Among other things, this focuses on tax avoidance, international tax rules and transparency.

Until recently, one issue remained unaddressed: a solution to the challenges that the ever-increasing digitalization of the global economy poses to the taxation of multinational companies. Think of digital companies doing business from a distance. While the reform was originally aimed specifically at companies operating in the digital economy, the final agreement is generically designed and relevant to all companies of significant size. The agreement is based on two separate pillars, with the ambition of implementing both pillars in 2023, each with its own objective:

  • Pillar 1 regulates a different distribution of profits and tax rights between countries for multinationals. The aim is for countries where these multinationals have customers or users to be able to levy taxes. Even if the multinational has no physical presence in the countries concerned (such as digital companies). Proposals for the implementation of this pillar are still awaited, postponing the implementation date to at least 2024, as the OECD is still in the process of drafting model rules.
  • Pillar 2 introduces a global minimum tax rate of 15 percent for multinational companies with annual sales of 750 million euros or more. On December 20, 2021, the OECD published model rules for implementation of this pillar and is therefore the part that has been discussed in recent months with regard to implementation.

Cabinet Rutte IV wants to get rid of the image of the Netherlands being a tax haven

The Netherlands is positive about the tax reforms. According to Marnix van Rij, State Secretary for Finance and responsible for Fiscal Affairs and the Tax Administration, the Netherlands is currently making efforts within the Inclusive Framework to develop and implement Pillar 1. In addition, the current cabinet wants to take away the image of the Netherlands as a tax haven and take a leading role within the EU in tackling tax avoidance. The cabinet is committed to the successful introduction of the minimum tax rate. However, several political parties, including the CDA (Christian Democrats), VVD (Liberal Conservatives) and GroenLinks (Greens), expressed their concerns about the financial consequences and the effects on the regulatory burden for businesses and the Tax Authorities, among others. The CDA questioned for example the complexity of the proposal and the feasibility of the timeline. Nevertheless, a majority in the House of Representatives supports the importance of the proposal, also in view of its cross-border nature.

 

European quarrels: still no agreement on Pillar 2

On December 22, 2021, the European Commission published the draft Directive for the introduction of the minimum tax, the second pillar. France, which took over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union from Slovenia on January 1, 2022, included this as one of its policy priorities. However, an agreement on tax legislation is subject to the principle of unanimity. This principle means that unanimity is required in the area of tax legislation, but also for decisions on foreign policy and EU membership. Therefore, in this case, the unanimous agreement of all 27 EU Member States is required.

After Budapest, Tallinn and Stockholm agreed to the EU proposal after some adjustments, including a change in the implementation date of Pillar 2 to 31 December 2023, only Warsaw still opposed. The reason for this refusal was not so much the plans regarding Pillar 2, but rather that Brussels had refused to approve the Polish COVID-19 recovery plan. When concessions were made in early June, the Polish Minister of Finance, Magdalena Rzeczkowska, also withdrew her veto.

Just when an agreement was on the table, a few minutes later Hungary unexpectedly and to the great displeasure of the other Member States, used its veto, where previously no objections had been raised. Budapest has been at odds with Brussels for years over a rule of law dispute. The Dutch Finance Minister, Sigrid Kaag, called Hungary’s action “remarkable.” Prime Minister Rutte also complained about the sudden resistance. To put it diplomatically: patience with Hungary is running out.

Whatever Hungary’s intentions may be, for the time being, it will probably not succeed in luring the EU into a successful compromise as Poland did. ‘Brussels’ saw advantages in a rapprochement with Poland, given the country’s economic and security issues as a result of the war in Ukraine. That compromise led to outrage in the Commission itself – two vice presidents voted against it – and to critical questions from the European Parliament and Member States. This makes it unlikely that the Commission will compromise with Hungary – a country that is even more deficient in the rule of law and regularly obstructive when it comes to European policymaking.

Reform is still a long way off

Partly due to the blockades by Poland and Hungary, the discussion on the principle of unanimity and the right of veto on tax legislation within the EU has flared up again. The European Commission wants to change decision-making to qualified majority voting for non-controversial legislation regarding tax policies, such as administrative cooperation and the fight against tax fraud and avoidance. However: to change this, consensus is also needed. For instance, the Netherlands is currently not in favour of abolishing the unanimity rule for fiscal policy.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the ocean, an agreement on taxes, climate, and health care (the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act”) was being negotiated in the US Senate. The blockade of Hungary was greeted with applause by the Republicans. Eventually, the “Manchin-Schumer Deal” was reached, including compromise legislation on the minimum profits tax. One problem: the proposed minimum tax incorporated into the Manchin-Schumer deal is not consistent with the OECD agreement. With all the implications for an uneven playing field. This creates the risk of other countries withdrawing from the OECD agreements. It has also led to concerns that multinationals will face a web of complex and inconsistent tax regulations.

All in all, it seems that real reform is still far ahead of us. The success of the new legislation will largely depend on how the plans are worked out: the tax devil is in the details. Pillar 2 appears to be a tough process, while Pillar 1 has yet to follow. Either way, the reform will require intensive multilateral cooperation and great commitment from multinational corporations. The political struggles, the technical details and the consequences for the regulatory burden make this an extremely complex project.

Public Matters advises companies and other organizations that are indirectly / directly affected by the impact of the reform of the (international) tax system and other tax legislation. Please check this page for more information or contact us.