Here is the Board’s Proposal for the 2024 CEEP’s Economy and Finances Chapter.
It will be put to vote in a motion at the 13th Council Meeting. Feel free to discuss it here or even submit counterproposals or amendments to the discussion here. Please note that although this discussion and thread is open to all pirates, final motions and amendments need to be supported and submitted by a Council Member though their delegates.
Our economic program aims to support sustainable long-term development, broad improvements in quality of life, and fostering a competitive, fair, and inventive economic environment. In this regard, we believe it is necessary to consider a broader set of economic metrics besides immediate gross productivity. Such measures must capture the development of long-term economic opportunities, well-being, environmental and social sustainability, and successful collaboration across the whole EU.
The environment of all economic activity needs to facilitate resilience and competition and stimulate and enforce transparency. This incentivizes social progress in a sustainable, fair, and democratic way. Pirates aim to protect individuals, preserve opportunities, and promote individual autonomy and well-being by dispersing and de-concentrating public and private power. Competitive markets provide a fertile ground for entrepreneurship. Competition policy should aim to prevent excessive market concentration and monopolistic practices which pose barriers for new businesses to enter markets. Facilitating opportunities for entrepreneurship, including SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and start-ups, leads to job creation, innovation, and economic dynamism, contributing to overall prosperity. An effective competition standard should look beyond consumer welfare and be science-based. Rather than needing to sanction the abuse of a dominant position, competition policy should focus more on the prevention of market power. Competition enforcement agencies should be adequately resourced, and get institutional support, and a legal mandate. Ideally, the competition authority must be independent and shielded from direct political interference.
Pirates believe that trade and cooperation are a way towards development and shared wealth. However, we see a lot of challenges in the current trade environment. At the same time, trade agreements have been abused in the past to empower private entities at the expense of public courts, exploit communities and promote nepotism and cronyism.
We propose basic principles that we will uphold regarding international trade. Considering trade treaties, the European Parliament must ratify the treaty and the treaty must be negotiated as transparently as possible, including public hearings and comprehensive access to information. Trade should be enlarging our markets and allowing more competition, therefore trade agreements should not give out more or less hidden special favours. The ultimate goal of international trade agreements is the positive development of all involved parties. Therefore, we need to always ask for at least the most basic working standards to be upheld by our trade partners and enforce paying up for common externalities damaging us all through carbon border adjustment mechanisms and similar tools.
Trade is also an economic and political tool. We support economic sanctions against authoritarian regimes, especially the regimes that are actively undermining European security and committing crimes against humanity. These sanctions should be precisely targeted to damage the wealth of the government elites, hinder the offensive and persecuting capacities of those regimes and avoid the suffering of the common citizens as much as possible. We should not supply weapons and surveillance technologies to authoritarian regimes.
Last years have also seen a surge in protectionism and the closing of free trade in critical technological areas like microchips or renewable energy technologies. We do believe that Europe should attain the highest possible level of strategic autonomy concerning these and the need to reduce our overdependence on authoritarian regimes. The way to get that autonomy and prosperity is through trade with new partners, research, technological excellence, and cooperation. Trade wars have repeatedly proven themselves detrimental.
The tax mix should be based on establishing an environment of fully internalized externalities of economic activities to cultivate an entrepreneurial environment and a long-term well-developing society.
To achieve this, we propose the following points: Moving a larger part of the tax burden from labour to capital. To facilitate this, tax harmonization across European jurisdictions should be further developed. This should include targeting strategic capital allocation for tax avoidance, and intentional obscuring of corporate structure (incl. public entities). We should focus on empowering local communities’ decision-making and interests regarding their local tax structure together with establishing an all-European harmonization framework (yet not unification of tax rates or tax base definitions, only framework of the shared approach). We will support global coordination on taxation, particularly in questions of international corporations.
Regulation, supervision, and taxation of the financial markets should encourage investment into long-term development strategies which are environmentally and socially sustainable. The environment should deter financial dominance, capital concentration, and for-profit short-term reallocation (e.g., stock buybacks). Speculative investments should bear heighten disincentives and should be more transparent.
Budgetary policy is an essential tool of economic policy. The current budgetary rules are targeted at preventing budgetary deficits and preventing member states to react in times of crisis.
We propose to discard and replace them with long-term budget sustainability assessments, and to prevent excessive budgetary imbalances.
This will allow member states to implement investment policies in spite of the defence, environmental and social challenges of our time, as well as encourage the balancing of their savings and consumption which will foster a dynamic internal market.
The next steps of European economic integration should support labour mobility, equality, and broad economic development of all European regions. Further, there should be continued support for the economic development of physical and institutional infrastructure, particularly of cross-border regions.
We as Pirates see the potential of crypto assets and that they may have a positive role in economic development. We want to protect cash for its anonymity including digital cash.