VENICE, Italy (Reuters) - Finance chiefs of the G20 large economies endorsed a landmark move to stop multinationals shifting profits to low-tax havens at talks on Saturday where they will also warn that coronavirus variants threaten the global economic recovery.
They also acknowledged the need to ensure fair access to vaccines in poorer countries. But a draft communique to be rubber-stamped at the meeting in the Italian city of Venice did not contain specific new proposals on how to do that.
The tax deal was set to be the biggest fresh policy initiative emerging from their talks. It caps eight years of wrangling over the tax issue and the aim is for national leaders to give it a final blessing at an October G20 summit in Rome.
The pact would establish a global minimum corporate tax of at least 15% to deter multinationals from shopping around for the lowest tax rate. It would also shift the way that highly profitable multinationals such as Amazon and Google are taxed, basing it partly on where they sell products and services, rather than on the location of their headquarters.
German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz confirmed to reporters that all G20 economies were on board for the pact, while U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said a handful of smaller countries still opposed to it, such as low-tax Ireland and Hungary, would be encouraged to sign up by October.