US intends to impose new duties on France The US government on Monday said it could impose trade duties of up to 100% on French imports of $ 2.4 billion, which include champagne, bags, cheese and other products. This is […]
US intends to impose new duties on France
The US government on Monday said it could impose trade duties of up to 100% on French imports of $ 2.4 billion, which include champagne, bags, cheese and other products. This is a response to France’s new digital services tax, which officials say is hurting U.S. tech companies.
The US Trade Representative’s office said its investigation showed that the French tax was «incompatible with prevailing principles of international tax policy and burdensome for affected American companies», including Alphabet Inc Google, Facebook Inc, Apple Inc and Amazon.com Inc.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the government is exploring similar investigations into digital services taxes in Austria, Italy and Turkey..
«USTR focuses on countering the growing protectionism of EU member states that unfairly targets American companies», – said Lighthizer. There was no mention of proposed digital taxes in Canada or the UK in his statement..
He also did not specify the date of entry into force of the new restrictions..
«French tax on digital services is unreasonable and discriminatory», – said in a joint statement by Senators Charles Grassley and Ron Wyden, leading Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Finance Committee.
Representatives of the French Embassy and the European Union Delegation in the American capital were unable to promptly contact Washington for comment.
But prior to the release of the USTR report, a French official said France would dispute the trade agency’s findings, echoing Paris’s assertion that the digital tax is not targeted specifically at U.S. tech companies.
«We will not give up taxing digital companies», – the official said.
A French tax of 3% applies to digital services revenues generated by businesses with over € 25 million in France and € 750 million worldwide.