Europe not attacking Google, Amazon, Facebook with tech tax: France

The U.S. should not see a proposed European levy on internet giants as an attack against the country, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire told CNBC on Saturday — nevertheless took the opportunity to chide America on its trade war.

A European Commission proposal would certainly impose a 3 percent tax on big companies like Google, Facebook in addition to Amazon, who derive a big chunk of their revenues through within the continent.

On Saturday, the French minister suggested which the idea was in fact America which had launched an attack on Europe, by adopting a more aggressive trade policy which targets European imports with tariffs.

“I had the impression which we are not the ones who attacked the United States,” Le Maire told CNBC’s Steve Sedgwick. “When you are looking at the trade situation, I contain the impression which This specific is usually the United States which has decided to put tariffs on European goods, not the contrary.”

He added: “I would certainly like to also underline which fair taxation is usually not taxation against the United States. The purpose of which taxation is usually to have a fair in addition to efficient taxation at an international level.”

Le Maire, alongside German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz, said in a statement on Saturday which he would certainly propose a “sunset clause” to the planned EU tax on the digital turnover of big companies, in a bid to reach compromise with different European countries.

The clause would certainly mean the completely new tax on tech giants would certainly be phased out once a further deal is usually met on an international level.

France’s Le Maire explained which the proposed EU tax would certainly target European firms as well, not just US corporate entities.

“There will be European companies included inside scope of the taxation,” he said, adding which he envisioned a theoretical “European Google” in addition to a “European Facebook” to arrive inside continent which would certainly also be subject to the completely new levy.

The EU has long been critical of tech giants for paying too little in tax, having a 250 million euro ($289 million) fine being dished out at Amazon last year over alleged “illegal tax benefits.” Ironically, President Donald Trump has repeatedly lashed out at Amazon for similar reasons.

“You have internet giants which do not pay the same level of taxation as our own SMEs (little in addition to medium-sized enterprises),” Le Maire told reporters during a press conference. “We can no longer accept to have our SMEs paying 40 points more of taxation than Google, Amazon or Facebook.”

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