The analysis of the general anti-avoidance tax rule in five countries of the European Union (United Kingdom, Austria, Germany, Sweden and France) shows clearly the frailty and weakness of the theoretical and jurisprudential constructions designed to fight this international problem. The research also displays a high degree of judicial discretionary, a worrying level of legal uncertainty – as a result of the introduction of tax rules linked to vague and imprecise concepts – and an inefficiency in the revenue collection unacceptable.
Furthermore, the article analyses the structure and function of the common general anti-avoidance rule (EU-GAAR) approved by the European Parliament, its scope and the problems that it’s possible interaction with another anti-avoidance rules (introduced by the domestic law, community law and conventional law) could generate. The author considers that the labyrinth which derives from the principle of non-discrimination on which the ECJ is trapped is also the labyrinth on which is trapped the cross-border application of the Member States GAAR’s and SAAR’s. The adoption of an EU-GAAR not solves the problem and only increases the chaotic juxtaposition of ineffective anti-avoidance rules.EC Tax Review