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EU Says Nine Nations Needed on Financial Transaction Tax

The European Commission responded to a letter from German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble and his French counterpart Pierre Moscovici urging action on a financial-transaction tax by reiterating that nine countries must submit formal requests for the plan to move forward.

In June, European Union finance ministers cleared the way for a smaller group of countries to proceed after it became clear there would not be unanimous support for an agreement among all 27 countries in the bloc.

“Even if implemented among a more limited group of member states, this tax offers real benefits,” EU Tax Commissioner Algirdas Semeta said today in an e-mailed statement. “We’d urge the other interested member states to now submit their requests as quickly as they can.”

Schaeuble and Moscovici today wrote the EU urging a push to design a tax under “enhanced cooperation” procedures. They also called on other nations to support the measure. Seven more states must submit requests.

“With this joint move, Germany and France are demonstrating the necessity of an integrated European approach to the taxation of financial markets and to combatting the effects of the financial crisis,” the German Finance Ministry said in a statement.

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