Sunday, 07 July 2019 17:08

Lower house passes 3% digital tax in France

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Lower house passes 3% digital tax in France Image by skylarvision from Pixabay

France has passed a measure to impose a 3% tax on technology giants like Google, Facebook and Amazon, with the country's lower house of parliament voting to adopt a law that prevents multinationals from avoiding taxes by setting up headquarters in low-taxing EU countries.

The Associated Press reported that at the moment, companies like these paid practically no tax in France where they all had plenty of sales.

The bill, which will go to the upper house for consideration in the week ahead, will tax companies that have global revenue of more than €750 million and French revenue of more than €25 million.

France made its intentions clear last year, with Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire telling the media in December that €500 million (US$570 million) would be raised through this measure in 2019.

The UK has put in place a digital services tax which will take effect from April next year.

The French bill, which targets companies that use the data of consumers to sell online advertising, is expected to hit Airbnb and Uber as well as companies from China and other parts of Europe.

The EU has not been able to decide on a tax that would span the political bloc, though there has been a great deal of discussion around the idea. Some low-taxing countries, like Ireland, are loath to go ahead as it would mean making Dublin a less attractive place for tech companies.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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