November 6, 2018 / 8:31 AM / 13 days ago

France says EU must have directive on digital tax this year

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire speaks on tax issues at a joint hearing with lawmakers of the economic affairs committee and the special committee on financial crime at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The French government insists that the European Union must agree on a directive by the end of the year to tax large international companies doing business in the digital sphere like Google, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said.

“Lets be clear - this is the red line for France, there must be the adoption of a directive on digital taxation by the end of this year,” Le Maire told reporters on Tuesday on entering a meeting of EU finance ministers.

He said the directive - an EU law - was needed despite work on the issue being done in parallel by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

“There will be the question of implementation of the directive, we are open on that question, because we know there is work done by the OECD. So on implementation we are open,” he said.

Reporting By Jan Strupczewski, Editing by Gabriela Baczynska

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