Large oil, gas, diamond and logging companies will be obliged to disclose full information on all projects where payments to governmental authorities exceed a threshold of 100.000 Euros under new rules adopted by the European Parliament today.
Fiona Hall MEP, leader of the Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament and main negotiator on the dossier on behalf of the Development Committee, said:
“For the first time in history, international companies in the extractive and logging industries will have to publish what they pay to government authorities. This public information means public empowerment in the fight against corruption. People in resource-rich developing countries will now be able to ask questions on where that money has been spent.
“But we must go further and extend the reporting requirement to all sectors. I welcome the Commission’s assurance that this will happen as part of the scheduled review of the Non Financial Reporting Directive.”
Sharon Bowles MEP, Chair of the Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee and author of many of the amendments to the Directives, commented:
“I have been fighting for these kinds of disclosures since becoming an MEP, and have successfully fought for the new country-by-country reporting rules for banks.
“However, it is very regrettable that these rules were not extended to all large EU companies despite a clear commitment from national governments at the May European Council and the recent exposés on corporate tax avoidance.
“I will put a legally enforceable financial reporting chapter into the EU’s non-financial reporting directive to extend these rules to all sectors by the end of this Parliament.”
Rebecca Taylor MEP, Lib Dem European legal affairs spokesperson, added:
“The new EU rules on accounting will also reduce red tape for small and medium sized businesses as they are now exempted from quarterly reporting.”
Note to editors:
The new rules are part of the EU Accounting and Transparency Directives and include mandatory country-by-country reporting for all large listed companies, as well as project-level reporting for all large public interest entities (PIEs).
On Wednesday 22nd May 2013 the European Council agreed on country by country reporting for large companies and groups in the Disclosure of non-financial and diversity information (proposal to amend accounting directives)