I admit some things take a little less time than I expect to make progress. I was in Denmark last Friday and the news has just reached me that the Danish ruling parties have agreed to encourage the development of a Fair Tax Mark in Denmark. This news of the Fair Tax Mark's endorsement in Denmark comes (via Google translate) from Politiken Denmark:
Just like the red eco-label and Max Havel Aars blue and green Fairtrade mark today shows the way to organic cafes and coffee produced under fair terms, a tax mark future show which companies have order in tax payments.
A new tax mark - a FairTax mark - is in fact one of five initiatives against tax havens, which the government parties, the Liberals, Danish People's Party, SF, Unity and conservatives today have agreed.
Tax label given to firms that meet a number of criteria for transparency in fiscal circumstances, says SF's tax spokesman Lisbeth Bech Poulsen.
"It must be some parameters reflecting that one can follow tax transactions, there is a degree of transparency and that you pay the tax you have to," she says.
The label must be a benchmark for consumers, government and others and thus influence businesses to greater transparency in tax matters.
Lisbeth Bech Poulsen hopes that businesses will see it as a competition parameter to have FairTax mark.
The Danish Business believes tax policy chief Jacob Ravn said immediately that a FairTax mark will be of no great importance for enterprises.
"Already today, companies have the opportunity to write on their website that they have transparency about tax payments. And there are also some companies that have a fiscal policy that they have put out. However, it is not so widespread, in this light, one might well consider whether this will have any major impact, "he said.
Yet it may well be that more companies will take it seriously if there is a tax notice from the state, believes Jacob Ravn.
"I think pretty much all businesses are aware of both raising the cost of course, but also that it has a meaning, how they act in society. It is of course a concrete weighing on companies, whether they feel it is so important to them that they will go along with it here, "he said.
I am not surprised by business opposition: gains in transparency have always been achieved despite opposition. I am sure there will be a lot of work to do on this, but as early Christmas presents go this is a good one. Thanks Denmark!