AK and ÖGB stick to their guns. Together with a large number of European trade unions, political and civil society organisations, they enter the next round in the fight for a European Financial Transaction Tax. This time, they need to convince the Heads of State and Governments. When they gather for their summit on 24 June in Brussels, they want to send a clear signal to Europe’s workers: the speculators will not get off scot-free! For this we need your support. Take part and above all - spread the word: !
The fight concerning the introduction of the Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) in Europe is long and strewn with obstacles. The financial lobby and its political allies are fighting tooth and nail to prevent it. However, the citizens of Europe want and demand it! In contrast to grandiose promises at the height of the crisis, so far, the costs of the crisis have been exclusively loaded onto the workers. The causers of the crisis, the speculators, wriggle and squirm and try to scaremonger their way out of it. The introduction of the FTT would harm the “business location”; “business” was threatening to move to other parts of the world. As usual, they do not produce any evidence. Why not? - There isn’t any. The proposed mini tax rate of 0.05% will not prompt any financial institution to leave the lucrative European market. However, for the first time it would also subject finance to a kind of turnover tax, from which it - until now - has been generously exempt. In contrast to the workers, who have to pay 20% Value Added Tax for every purchase they make. Just to mention an odd thing: as part of its latest economic recommendations, the Commission even suggested to some Member States to increase VAT, which in particular hits low-income households. In spite of this, Barroso and Co. have still not deemed it necessary to present a legislative proposal on the introduction of a European Financial Transaction Tax at last.

And this, even though a large majority of all political groups of the European Parliament have urged the Commission to do so. Prior to the decisive vote in March 2011, our campaign - with the broad support of the citizens - has sent more than 500,000 petitions to MEPs. This has proved effective. Subsequently, the Commission leisurely asked the public what it thought of an FTT. In order to prevent this poll once again being hijacked by the lobbies of the financial industry, our coalition urged the citizens not to ignore but to take part in it, with the result that the Commission received about 400,000 messages of support.

Now the ball is in the corner of the Heads of State and Governments. They meet in Brussels on 24 June to discuss ways out of the Euro crisis. Together with you we want to urge them to leave the path, which one-sidedly burdens workers and not to introduce austerity measures, which suffocate both people and the economy. We want to back those Heads of Government, who are in favour of introducing a European speculation tax. And we want to urge those Heads of Government, who out of misguided consideration for their “financial centres” block the FTT, to reconsider. A tax rate of only 0.05% on speculative transactions would generate an urgently needed income of Euro 200 billion for the EU countries. And it would have the effect that the madness of computer controlled speculative transactions without any social added value would get its wings clipped. Hence, the Financial Transaction Tax would be a courageous and urgently necessary signal that the time when the financial markets dominated democratic policy and the societies is finally over. Support us in achieving this goal by taking part on and by trying to get the message across!