France unveils plan to tax internet giants' revenue

France unveils plan to tax internet giants' revenue

The French government has unveiled plans to slap a 3% tax on the French revenues of internet giants like Google, Amazon and Facebook.

The bill outlines how digital companies with worldwide revenues of more than €750m, including French revenue over €25m, will be taxed.

In a news conference in Paris, finance minister Bruno Le Maire estimated the tax will raise about €500m a year this year but that should increase "quickly".

About 30 companies, mostly based in the US but also from China and Europe, will be affected.

Mr Le Maire said the tax will not affect companies directly selling their own products online.

"This is about justice", he said.

"These digital giants use our personal data, make huge profits out of these data ... then transfer the money somewhere else without paying their fair amount of taxes."

He quoted figures from the European Commission showing that digital giants pay on average 14 percentage points less tax than other European companies.

France decided to implement it after a similar proposal at European Union level failed to get unanimous support from member states.

Mr Le Maire said he would push for an international deal by the end of the year at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), a Paris-based forum made up mostly of developed nations.

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