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Global Tax 50 2016: Angela Merkel

Chancellor, Germany

Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel was also in the Global Tax 50 2015, and 2013

Angela Merkel plans to continue being one of the world's most experienced leaders as she prepares to run for a fourth term as Germany's Chancellor in 2017. She has presided over Europe's strongest economy, which has massive influence in the EU, since 2005. Earlier this autumn she announced that she will make up to €6 billion ($6.4 billion) worth of tax cuts for 2017 and 2018 because "the good shape of the economy allowed for fiscal flexibility".

Despite the tax cuts, Merkel faces a tough battle for re-election next year, mostly due to her decision to allow hundreds of thousands of refugees to settle in Germany – which many voters and opposition parties see as responsible for several violent incidents that took place in July.

But there's another reason why Merkel's plans to woo the voters with tax cuts might fail – polls have shown that most Germans actually do not want tax cuts. Public broadcaster ARD ran a poll in August, which showed 58% of respondents said that the government should spend the budget surplus on investments, while 22% thought that it should be spent on paying off debt.

The Chancellor is looking at a busy 2017, which will be spent looking for solutions to problems posed by events like Brexit and Donald Trump's shock victory. If Merkel gets elected for a fourth term, she will undoubtedly offer some much-needed stability to European tax, politics and economics.

The Global Tax 50 2016

View the full list and introduction

The top 10 • Ranked in order of influence

1. Margrethe Vestager

2. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists

3. Brexit

4. Arun Jaitley

5. Jacob Lew

6. Antoine Deltour and Raphaël Halet

7. Operation Zealots

8. Guy Verhofstadt

9. Theresa May (and the 'three Brexiteers')

10. Donald Trump

The remaining 40 • In alphabetic order

Kemi Adeosun

Piet Battiau

Elise Bean

Monica Bhatia

Allison Christians

Tim Cook

Rita de la Feria

Caroline Flint

Judith Freedman

Chrystia Freeland

Pravin Gordhan

Orrin Hatch

Meg Hillier

Mulyani Indrawati

Lou Jiwei

Paul Johnson

Stephanie Johnston

Chris Jordan

Pravind Jugnauth

Wang Jun

Jean-Claude Juncker

Kathleen Kerrigan

Christine Lagarde

Werner Langen

Jolyon Maugham

Angela Merkel

Narendra Modi

Will Morris

Michael Noonan

Grace Perez-Navarro

Platform for the Collaboration on Tax

Donato Raponi

Pascal Saint-Amans

Heather Self

Robert Stack

Tax Justice Network

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)

Transparency International

US Committee on Ways and Means

Rodrigo Valdés

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