Google to pay €465 million in additional taxes in France

Google to pay €465 million in additional taxes in France

FILE PHOTO: A Google sign is seen during the WAIC (World Artificial Intelligence Conference) in Sha
FILE PHOTO: A Google sign is seen during the WAIC (World Artificial Intelligence Conference) in Shanghai, China, September 17, 2018. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo

PARIS: Google said on Thursday (Sep 12) it agreed to pay €465 million (US$513.3 million) in additional taxes to French authorities, boosting the total settlement to end a fiscal fraud probe in the country to nearly €1 billion.

France's financial prosecutor office earlier said Google had agreed to pay half a billion euros in fine to settle the four-year-old investigation.

"We have put an end to the tax and related disputes we had had in France for many years," Google said in a written statement.

"These agreements include a payment of €500 million announced today by a French court, as well as an amount of €465 million in additional taxes that we have agreed to pay," it added.

French Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet and Budget Minister Gerald Darmanin welcomed the "definitive settling" of all the contentious issues, adding in a statement that the outcome was the result of two years of intense work by the French authorities.

"This outcome is good news for the public finances and fiscal fairness in France," their statement said.

Belloubet said the settlement showed that the French authorities have the tools to ensure an equitable tax system.

"It is a historic settlement both for our public finances and because it marks the end of an era," Darmanin said. "By normalising Google's situation in France, (the settlement) responds to our citizens' demands for fiscal fairness," he said.

The settlement comes as France, as well as European allies, seek to find common ground with the United States in a long-running dispute over the taxation of digital giants.

French President Emmanuel Macron said alongside US President Donald Trump at the G7 summit in August that leaders had reached an agreement on the taxation of tech giants, though the precise details remain to be worked out.

Source: Agencies/ga

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