Accounts Court sides with Brussels: Madeira’s tax exemptions awarded illegally

Madeira’s regional government suffered another slight this week as the Accounts Court sided with Brussels in considering illegal the contract awarded for the management of the island’s ‘tax-free zone’ because it “violates European rules by impeding companies potentially interested from making proposals”.

Anti-corruption ‘heroine’ and former MEP Ana Gomes has welcomed the news, saying the court has reached many of her own conclusions about the so-called ‘Zona Franca’.

For a background to this story (click here).

Explains Público, the Accounts Court has now given the regional government six months to come up with a solution to the issue – which isn’t the only problem Brussels has with Portugal over Madeira’s Zona Franca.

Brussels “also has a detailed investigation underway into tax exemptions attributed to businesses within the Zona Franca” explains the paper, stressing European Commission watchdogs “doubt the Portuguese State has complied with what was agreed relating to jobs created and profits obtained by companies as a condition to benefitting from the fiscal regime”.