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Liz Nelson ■ Luxembourg – Submission to UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women

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Luxembourg – Submission to UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women

This submission to CEDAW’s 70th session, held in Geneva from 2 – 20 July 2018, summarises how Luxembourg's tax system jeopardizes women’s human and gender equality rights in Luxembourg and abroad.

This background memorandum outlines how Luxembourg’s domestic corporate, trust, charitable, and not-for-profit laws combined with extremely low or zero tax rates for multinational entities, high levels of financial secrecy, and lax rules on corporate reporting jeopardize women’s human and gender equality rights in Luxembourg (i) at the domestic level, (ii) in ‘upstream’ countries from which extremely high net worth individuals, businesses, and investment entities transfer assets and income to Luxembourg in order to reduce taxes they would otherwise have to pay to their countries of origin, and (iii) in ‘downstream’ countries in which local tax laws permit multinational corporations to operate on a virtually tax free basis and to transfer them to no- or low-tax entities in Luxembourg. This memorandum identifies key questions that may help assess the State party’s progress toward reducing the negative effects these fiscal and financial policies have on the status of women in Luxembourg as well as women in other countries affected by the extraterritorial reach of Luxembourg laws.