Danish government does not fund Kosovo prison due to conflict with EU law – Exit
The government failed to muster the necessary support in Denmark’s parliament, Folketing, to fund a prison it planned to rent in Kosovo due to a row over an EU-imposed tax.
In December 2021, Denmark signed an agreement with Kosovo to rent a prison in the town of Glijan, 50 kilometers south of the capital Pristina, to house 300 prisoners sentenced to deportation.
But on Thursday May 9, the Social Democratic government failed to receive the necessary funds from parliament despite a broad political consensus in the aisle.
The far-right Danish People’s Party, the right-wing Conservatives and the liberal left said they would vote against the funding – even if they had signed the deal in December.
“The Danish People’s Party and the Conservatives are running away from the deal they made,” said Finance Minister Jeppe Bruus.
The issue stems from an interpretation of EU legislation which the Danish government says requires parts of the deal for the prison service to be funded with money from a new VAT on rights licenses. author on art and culture.
But contrary to what officials from the Danish Ministry of Taxes and Ministry of Justice have concluded, lawyers from law firm Gorrissen Federspiel have said that Denmark does not need to introduce such a new tax.
“Our assessment is that EU law – contrary to what is assumed in the draft law – does not require the granting of copyright licenses to be subject to VAT where the license is granted by someone other than the author or the artist himself,” Gorrissen Federspiel told the broadcaster. DR.
“We have a reasonable suspicion that it is not necessary. We don’t have to if we haven’t received a letter of formal notice from the EU, so we can wait and see,” left-wing party tax spokeswoman Louise Schack Elholm said.
“If a letter arrives, the left is ready to make Danish law conform to EU law,” she added.
The Conservatives shared the same view, according to party spokeswoman Mette Abildgaard. “We have always made it very clear that we will only introduce this VAT if we are obliged to by the EU – and there are many indications that we are not doing so,” she said.
“As long as there are doubts, we want to give taxpayers the benefit of the doubt,” she added.