In an open letter addressed to the Minister of Environment and Climate Action, João Pedro Matos Fernandes, the MCTM accuses the government of “unduly exempting EDP from the payment of 110 million euros in stamp duty”.
MCTM spokesperson Paulo Meirinhos was outraged by this situation which he said will harm Terra de Miranda in particular, and the population of Trás-os-Montes in general.
“How is it possible that one of the biggest companies of the century does not pay taxes, at the same time as every ordinary Portuguese, however poor, pays taxes for what he earns, buys and owns, and often for what he doesn’t have, ”he accused, talking to Lusa.
The movement further invokes “that it is no longer just a loss for Terra de Miranda, but for the whole country and for all Portuguese taxpayers”.
“The Minister of the Environment and the government had prior knowledge of the company because the law requires it, since it is about selling natural resources. For this reason, the Movement says the government should have forced EDP not to use the tax planning plans that led to the non-payment of the tax. [de selo]», Declares the movement in the same open letter.
In the opinion of the members of this movement considered “non-partisan”, the Minister of the Environment and Climate Action is still in time to collect the taxes due, “activating the anti-abuse clause provided for this type company ”.
The movement also wonders why the government allowed the sale of the dams without any compensation for the state budget.
“Knowing that the tax planning subterfuge used by EDP would make it possible to avoid the payment of the taxes due, he asks if the Government has not conditioned the authorization of sale to the payment of the tax due, namely of more than 110 millions euros to EDP in stamp duty, ”asks the MCTM in this open letter.
In November, the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Action announced that it had issued a “favorable opinion from the Portuguese Environment Agency on the transmission of these titles for the use of water resources and, by Consequently, EDP could proceed with the sale of the infrastructure to the French company Engie ”. .
The stake is the sale of the hydroelectric power stations of Miranda, Bemposta, Picote, Baixo Sabor, Feiticeiro and Foz Tua.
In recent weeks, both the Left Bloc and the Social Democratic Party (PSD) have called for an urgent parliamentary hearing with Minister Matos Fernandes to clarify the main lines of this operation.
In question, according to PSD, “there is a lack of transparency” in the activity announced, about a year ago, and concluded on December 17, of the sale of six hydroelectric plants located in the rivers Douro, Sabor and Tua by EDP- Energias de Portugal, SA to a consortium of French companies, led by Engie.
On December 14, the government created a working group to analyze the impact of the sale of six EDP dams to Engie, which includes representatives from various sectors of government and the 10 municipalities covered by the operation.
According to a note from the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Action, “a working group has been created with representatives of the government and of the 10 municipalities concerned by the transmission of titles for the use of water resources from power plants. hydropower plants of Miranda, Bemposta, Picote, Baixo Sabor, Feiticeiro and Foz Tua “.
The task of the working group will be to analyze and deepen the impacts of the marketing of the six dams located in the Douro watershed, as well as to determine “the real benefits from which these municipalities can benefit” and to list “the measures. which allow it, in the best way, to respect the rule accepted in the State finance law for 2021 ”, underlined the Ministry of the Environment.
In November, the Intercommunal Community of Trás-os-Montes announced that it would request a meeting with the Prime Minister to assess the counterparts for the sale, by EDP, of the six dams.
FYP (SMA / JF / FYP) // TDI
Lusa / end