No Google Tax Deal and We are Going for More Companies, French Finance Minister Says

Google Mountain View

France intends to make all multinational companies that are operating in the country pay the expected amount of tax. France Finance Minister, Michel Sapin said that he expected more raids for these multinationals to continue after Google and McDonalds also suffered the same fate. He spoke with reporters and said that the country would not negotiate with Google on taxes as Britain had done back in January.

Google office in Paris raided

The Google headquarters in Paris was raided by the French police who were investigations allegations of tax evasion by the company. The McDonald’s French headquarters were also raided, but it was on May 18 in another one of the tax investigations.

Sapin said that they would not stop but they would go all the way, and he also promised other cases. The raids that are happening now are as a result of the work that the tax investigators started back three to four years ago. Back then, the tax authorities changed the information and transferred it to the authorities who could work at it from a criminal angle.

This is part of the pressure that multinational companies are facing in Europe. Google, McDonald’s and other companies such as Starbucks are all experiencing this pressure. Many European governments say that these companies are manipulating their presence all over the world and are avoiding taxes in some certain regions which these governments feel is not fair.

Google gave out a reply saying that they were going to comply with the French law in every aspect, and McDonald’s refused to comment on the issue. It, however, referred to a comment that it made before which said that it was proud to be one of the biggest taxpayers in the country.

Sapin refused to discuss the numbers that would be involved in the investigations. However, a source in the France finance ministry said that the French tax authorities would seek to get around €1.6 billion from the search giant in back taxes.

When he was asked if they would strike a deal with Google, he replied that France as a country did not do deals like Britain, but rather they preferred to strike the law. Back in January, Google made a deal with Britain to pay back taxes for £130 million pounds. The decision to make a deal was criticized by the opposition lawmakers and also other campaigners who shouted that the figure was too low for the crime.

Sapin reiterated that there would be no negotiations at all, though he said they would not rule out some marginal adjustments. “That’s not the logic we are in,” Sapin said.