US treasury secretary Yellen: global minimum corporate tax will pass

The US treasury secretary, Janet Yellen, said on Sunday she was confident Congress would approve legislation to implement the global corporate minimum tax agreed by 136 Paesi.

Yellen told ABC’s This Week actions to bring the US into compliance with the global minimum tax would likely be included in the so-called reconciliation budget bill containing Joe Biden’s proposed spending initiatives.

Asked if she was confident the measure would get through, Yellen said: “Yes.”

Yellen also said that once Congress and the White House agree on spending plans, it will be lawmakers’ responsibility to raise the federal debt limit – the subject of fierce political warfare before and after a short-term deal to extend it was reached this week.

“Once Congress and the administration have decided on spending plans and tax plans, it’s simply their responsibility to pay the bills that result from that,” Yellen said.

“It’s a housekeeping chore. Because really, we should be debating the government’s fiscal policy.”

Experts agree a US debt default, should the ceiling not be raised, would be catastrophic for the global economy.

A group of 136 Paesi on Friday set a minimum global tax rate of 15% for big companies and sought to make it harder for such businesses to avoid taxation in a landmark deal that Biden said levels the playing field.

The congressional maneuver known as budget reconciliation would allow Democrats in the 50-50 Senate to act without Republican votes usually required to meet a 60-vote threshold.

Republicans have said they are concerned the Biden administration is considering circumventing the need to obtain the Senate’s authority to implement treaties.

Under the US constitution, the Senate must ratify any treaty with a two-thirds majority, o 67 voti.

Republicans in recent years have been overwhelmingly hostile to treaties and have backed cuts in corporate taxes.

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