(Bloomberg) — MetLife Inc. Chief Executive Officer Steve Kandarian said industries must be willing to forfeit some of their advantages in the tax code in order for the U.S. to seize a “once-in-a-generation” opportunity to lower corporate rates and simplify the process.
“If every company and every industry views its tax preferences as sacred, reform will be impossible,” Kandarian said Thursday in his annual letter to shareholders. “As long as tax reform does not pose a fundamental risk to our business model, we will be supportive.”
The White House unveiled its goals Wednesday, saying the federal corporate tax rate should be slashed to 15% from 35 percent. President Donald Trump’s plan also said Congress should “eliminate tax breaks for special interests,” without providing specifics.
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Past efforts to reform the tax code have been opposed by lobbyists for industries that enjoy deductions. But Kandarian said corporate executives should look at the big picture.
“We are also optimistic that reducing the U.S. corporate income tax rate, which is the highest in the developed world, will make U.S. companies more competitive globally,” the CEO said in the letter.