Trump administration proposes slapping new tariffs on $2.4 billion worth of French goods to retaliate against big tech tax

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  • The US proposed retaliatory tariffs against France on
    Monday for its new digital services tax.
  • Critics said the tax has
    disproportionately hit technology companies based in the
    US.
  • The US has separately prepared to broaden tariffs
    against the EU bloc as part of a long-running dispute over aircraft
    subsidies.
  • Visit Business
    Insider’s homepage for more stories
    .

The United States proposed retaliatory tariffs against France on
Monday for its new digital services tax, which has targeted
American technology giants like Amazon and Facebook. 

The Trump administration said in
a statement it was proposing
“duties of up to 100%” on $2.4
billion worth of French products, including sparkling wine, cheese,
and other goods.

The move, which needs presidential approval, is meant to
penalize the American ally for its 3% tax on technology companies
that was signed into law in July.

“[US Trade Representative’s] decision today sends a clear signal
that the United States will take action against digital tax regimes
that discriminate or otherwise impose undue burdens on US
companies,” US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in a
statement. “Indeed, USTR is exploring whether to open Section 301
investigations into the digital services taxes of Austria, Italy,
and Turkey. The USTR is focused on countering the growing
protectionism of EU member states, which unfairly targets US
companies, whether through digital services taxes or other efforts
that target leading US digital services companies.”

Officials have been investigating whether that legislation
disproportionately hit technology companies based in the US. The
tax applies to companies with global revenue of at least 750
million euros and digital sales of at least 25 million euros in
France.

Monday’s announcement was the result of the five-month
investigation, in which the USTR “concluded that France’s Digital
Services Tax (DST) discriminates against US companies, is
inconsistent with prevailing principles of international tax
policy, and is unusually burdensome for affected US companies.”

Spain, Italy, Britain and several other European countries have
separately announced plans to tax digital revenue, saying that
technology companies avoid taxes by building subsidiaries in other
countries. 

Trump was swift to retaliate against France for its digital
services tax in July. The two countries reached an interim
agreement shortly after, delaying that threat for 90 days.

“If anybody taxes them, it should be their home Country, the
USA,” Trump
wrote
on Twitter this summer, referring to technology
companies.

Trade relations between the US and the European Union have
appeared to sour on separate fronts this year. The US has also
prepared to broaden tariffs against the bloc as part of a
long-running dispute over aircraft subsidies.

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restores metal tariffs on Brazil and Argentina in surprise
move


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Source: FS – All – Economy – News
Trump administration proposes slapping new tariffs on .4 billion worth of French goods to retaliate against big tech tax