Preparation of the Eurogroup and informal ECOFIN Council meetings 24-25 May

Vice-President Dombrovskis and Commissioner Moscovici will represent the European Commission at the Eurogroup meeting, where the agenda includes adiscussion on the implementation of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) programme for Greece, an exchange of views on the economic situation and the outlook in the euro area.The meeting will be followed by a press conference.Vice-President Dombrovskis, Commissioner Moscovici and Commissioner Hill will represent the Commission at the working sessions of the ECOFIN meeting on Wednesday, where the focus will be on corporate tax avoidance, VAT and the Banking Union. Ministers will try to come to an agreement on the way forward for new rules to tackle loopholes in our taxation systems which some multinational companies use to avoid paying their fair share of tax. The Council is also expected to adopt conclusions confirming political support for the Commission’s proposed process towards a common EU list of third countries who do not respect international tax good governance standards. On VAT, ministers will discuss the Commission’s VAT Action Plan and adopt conclusions on VAT fraud (including the ‘VAT Gap‘), the future definitive EU VAT system and ways to give Member States more flexibility on VAT rates. In the session devoted to Banking Union, the Commission will update ministers on the implementation of the various initiatives in this area. Finally, ministers will exchange views on the Country Reports that include the results of in-depth reviews and the analysis of the implementation of the 2015 country-specific recommendations. A press conference will take place at the end of the meeting.