Tech giant Google settles for 500 million euros in a French tax fraud investigation that has been running for four years, reports the French financial prosecutor Thursday.
French intelligence services have been investigating for years whether Google is meeting its financial obligations. Google pays relatively little to no tax in many countries. It does this through a tax structure via Ireland, where it has its European headquarters.
Google is not the only major tech company that pays little tax in this way in countries where it operates. The European Union has been trying for years to find a solution for this, but the Member States cannot always agree on the precise approach.
France recently introduced a digitaks
Meanwhile, a few countries have chosen not to wait any longer and to introduce a special tax for large tech companies themselves. France, for example, recently introduced a new tax with which large multinationals such as Facebook and Google now have to transfer 3 percent of the income they generate in France to the French state.
The measure only applies to companies with a turnover of more than 750 million euros per year, of which at least 25 million must be generated in France. The measure will apply retroactively from 2019 and is expected to bring in around 400 million euros this year.
Earlier the United Kingdom announced that it would levy tax on the turnover of large tech companies. However, this will only happen from April 2020.