Google has agreed to pay a 500 million euro fine under an agreement, approved Thursday, September 12 by the French justice, which balance a case of tax fraud conducted for four years by the National Financial Prosecutor (PNF). The US digital giant will also pay 465 million euros in additional fees.

"We ended the tax and related disputes that we had in France for many years," Google said in a statement issued after the court hearing.

"We remain convinced that a coordinated reform of the international tax system is the best way to provide a clear framework for companies operating around the world," adds Google.

End of lawsuits for "aggravated tax evasion"

The € 500 million fine, accepted by Google France and Google Ireland, has been validated as part of a public interest court agreement (CJIP), which allows a company to negotiate a fine without going to trial. nor go through a procedure of "pleading guilty".

Through this agreement, which puts an end to the 2015 "aggravated tax evasion" lawsuits filed by the PNF, Google acknowledges that the alleged acts may correspond to the offense of corporate tax fraud.

In the eyes of the PNF, Google had refrained from paying more than 189 million euros in taxes to the French tax authorities between 2011 and 2016. The multinational has a period of withdrawal of ten days.

In the other part of the agreement, the US giant has agreed to pay 465 million euros to put an end to the tax adjustment procedures initiated in recent years by Bercy.

The US digital giant has already made such agreements abroad, including the United Kingdom and Italy, where it has paid several hundred million euros to get a prosecution.

Google, along with other US multinationals like Amazon or Facebook, is regularly accused of lowering the revenue it receives in France, via complex arrangements, in order to reduce its taxes.

The US group, whose European head office is located in Ireland, one of the countries where the corporate income tax (12.5%) is the lowest in the EU and the world, has always assured his side " to respect the French legislation ".

With AFP and Reuters