They make a profit somewhere, they pay their taxes, period. Those loopholes need to be closed.
So, if I — as a danish citizen — make money from someone in France, I should pay taxes to both the Danish and French government?
If you think that these "loopholes" should be closed then close them for all companies and countries, don't enact discriminatory laws and then act indignant about it.
The estimated trade weighted average of tariffs by the US after the tariff announcements in 2017 was 2.2%. I couldn't find any more recent number. 
For the EU this appears to be around 1.8% (2017). 
It is true that the EU used to have higher tariffs though, but I don't think this is still true with the new, recent tariffs by the US.
You can find the old number of 1.7% by the US in the second link I provided.
In any case those numbers are still low. The US was at 2.3% and the EU at 3% in 2015. 
: http://www.iberglobal.com/files/2018/Trade-Wars_CPB.pdf Page 10
US argument: "Europe taxes American cars 10%, while America taxes European cars 2%."
Which seems true, when you look at the actual EU/US tariff numbers:
US: 25% tariff on trucks, 2.5% on cars
EU: 22% on trucks, 10 % on cars
Quote from :
> But when you look in details at the numbers, you realize that most of what is sold in the US, that is considered as car in the EU, is put in the trucks category in the US, by being called "light truck".
> In the US there are twice as many "light trucks" sold compared to "cars". Light trucks are pickups, SUVs, minivans. Those are just "cars" in Europe.
> EU import fees are 10% on cars (hatchbacks and SUVs alike). US import fees are 2.5% on cars and 25% on light trucks.
> Average car price in the US is $26k, average light truck price is $36k.
> Therefore, if you care for math, average duty on combined US car+light truck market is 19%, nearly double of the EU rate!
Trade, tariff and the likes are complex matters, but ultimately they're also just numbers, so when in doubt, run the numbers.
Just because you dress it up doesn't change what it actually is.
And are you suggesting that france doesn't subside specific industries?
If you're complaints are exclusive to the aviation and defence industries then a US complaint regarding the EU and france could include that and every other industry.
what fraction of GDP is that? 1-5%?
Europe semi public enterprises have a much bigger weight. Banking, energy, postal services, transport, telecommunications were until recent national monopolies and protecting domestic champions is still a matter of national interest.
And generally speaking the US has a trade deficit with Europe:
My understanding of the economic system between the US and the world is that other countries support the US dollar by using it for trade, and that the US in turn is able to print a lot of US dollars that can be used by american consumers to buy goods from the world.
Could other countries retaliate to US trade tariffs by dedollarizing trade?
Also, it's important to understand that for France this is a very important issue of fairness. Not just for political gain, but at the street level. We are one of the best countries in the world in terms of change between income inequality pre and post tax redistribution (meaning while we're not terrible but not great either in terms of income inequality pre taxes, post taxes and redistribution we jump to one of the best overall).
This law is not anti US (again like in my other comment: 11 of the 26 companies that fit the criterias are not from the US, several are EU based, and 4 are even french), it's merely making sure each pay (what wes believe to be) their fair share compared to the value they extract, and thus finally acting on the loophole that is "everyone knows and act like data is all the value / tax agencies should act like data has no value whatsoever so it can leave without being taxed".
It's not even a move against the weird licencing trick "à la" Starbucks or anything like that, it's merely a tax on data extracted. Either it has value, and it should be taxed, or it doesn't (or not enough) and then it's fairly easy to stop extracting it.
I just wanted to present a strategic view of the situation. At this level, its not really a matter of who is right, and more of who has the power to do what.
France's top exports to the US are aircraft parts and beverages (wine).
Since the US needs those parts to export the (assembled) planes, I think the aircraft lobby (e.g. Boeing) will press hard to prevent a tariff here because it'd raise rates across the board, so that leaves wine: My hunch is even a 100% tariff on wine is unlikely to dissuade anyone from purchasing French wine -- the American wine is better, so the only people buying it are people who really wanted French wine anyway oh là là.
I don't know yet what I think about a trade war with all of Europe though.
I purchased a handful of cheapo bottles (in the 3-8 euro range) from Franprix as a surprise to my wine-loving friends, hid the bottles from them and prepared blind tastings for them, only to discover that they regarded even the best of them to be undrinkable.
Perhaps this is simply due to a discrepancy between French and American palates? Perhaps Franprix is a bad place to buy wines? Perhaps a lot of things, but the notion that any $3 wine in France is universally regarded as 'decent' is not one I can vouch for.
In Paris yes it’s a bad place but in the producing regions they can have a nice local selection.
> $3 wine in France is universally regarded as 'decent' is not one I can vouch for.
You are right, even higher priced wines are hit or miss. Choosing wine in France is very complicated, compared to the US where price is a good taste indicator. But you can definitely find very good $3-5 bottles in France.
From my experience in the UK, none of the French wines I could find in supermarkets exist in France. They appear to be specifically made for export and they are priced double or triple what a comparable bottle would be sold in France.
Given the US is a hell further than the UK, that's probably even worse, stranger wines and more pricey.
I have to disagree with one point though:
“American wine is better than French wine....” (gulp!).
But we're talking about what changes buying-behaviour, and it's important to consider that as a savvy shopper in the US you can go into a wine shop and buy everything under $20, and you'll find local wins. That's how you anchor your expectations about prices and quality. Now whether that's because of duty/import or it's because of shipping, or it's simply because only big brands will bother exporting is, or any other reason, those reasons are out of scope simply because a tariff isn't going to change them in the slightest.
That's for good wine. There are cheaper wines available of course.
If you're saying $20, you must be talking about a 6 pack ;)
This legend about french cheap wine is getting better and better everytime I hear it. 3-4€ is the low price for wine in a bottle. Some are decent, some are utter shit. But that's not "for good wine". That's entry level, which sometimes is decent.
I know some of the export wine is cooking-grade shit and people don't know the difference. But for people versed in wine in the US, the €3-4 bottles aren't going to cut it.
That's a huge selection covering all types of wine for as little as a few euros. Price is not a predictor of anything, there are both good and bad wines all over the place.
Wine is truly a commodity in France. There are very few people paying 10€ a bottle unless you're talking Champagne, that's not considered a wine.
edit: See for yourself https://www.carrefour.fr/r/boissons-et-cave-a-vins/cave-a-vi...
EDIT though I do like a nice Zinfandel, the sheer range offered by the French producers is unmatched.
By what objective metric?
Californian wine due to the drought has much higher alcohol %s in recent years.
This does impact the taste, and it's not all good.
This seems to be the problem. The EU laws have allowed these companies to avoid taxes. Small countries just next to France (Luxembourg) are able to help these companies. But France will not go against these countries and instead try to handle things through taxes.
I don't think this will workout greatly for France. France solution to everything seems to be: "Put a tax on it". The EU needs to get its crap together.
I don't like Tariffs. But if you worked internationally you should know that the US is one of the most open countries when it comes to doing business. You can open a company, a bank account, get a tax ID, buy shares in US companies, trade, etc...
Did they mention Jersey, Guernsey, Isle of Man + Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Gibraltar, Turks and Caicos Islands?
Well, I suppose they aren't EU member states, carry on.
France cannot change Luxembourg's business model (help tax evasion in neighboring countries, live off of EU subsidies), it has no jurisdiction there. They can change their tax code though.
As for buying shares in the US, there is a 30pct tax for non-resident alien.
It's the lack thereof. Regulators / Lawmakers aren't paid thousands by the hour to find and cover loopholes, and also cannot see the future. Unlike a Google, who is willing to pay someone millions to find loophole. It's a one-sided battle that giant corporations will always win.
>I don't think this will workout greatly for France. France solution to everything seems to be: "Put a tax on it". The EU needs to get its crap together.
EU or France, which is it? This initiative is coming out of France, not the EU. What did the EU do wrong this time? Did you forget that the EU is what enables these corporations to easily enter and seamlessly expand within one of the largest shared economies? If it wasn't for the EU, the work companies would have to expand would exponentially increase, due to many different regulations, taxation, tariffs, etc.
You are somehow using the protectionist actions of a member of the EU to paint the EU as the roadblock/point of incompetence, when really it does the exact opposite.
That is not quite correct actually.
You have to pay US taxes on US shares, doesn't matter where you are. They can be quite high, something like 30% of yearly profit. Then you have to pay local taxes too, that can be significant as well.
This makes US shares non viable for most Europeans. The double taxation makes them worthless.
(Also, the US trying to bully France on this one is unlikely to go well, that tends to trigger a French nationalist response.)
Why doesn't the US tell Google to go complain to Bermuda, and implement a comparable tax themselves? And apply it to all corporation evading US corporate taxes while using US infrastructure? (big pharma)
(The answer, of course is nationalism and corporate money in US politics)
China has been on track to overtake the US as the largest economy for many years now. The US obviously feels threatened by the shift of economic powers and currently tries every thing they can to prevent this from happening, but it's going to happen regardless. China has a stable country, a hard working population, people feel content and the government is looking after its people despite what Western media is reporting. The Western world is increasingly becoming divided, fueled by capitalist greed, social media which is anything but "social", huge wealth disparities, racism and many other deep ingrained problems. The US might complain about other nations spying, etc., but it is the US and the NSA who has been the only nation which has been proven black on white that they have been grossly spying on everyone else in this world, it is the US which is the only nation which is constantly starting wars with other nations and destabilising economies. It's not China, nor France, nor the EU.
I can only recommend anyone in the US to go and visit other nations and explore the world and it becomes very quickly apparent that the Western world has some deep issues which other countries seem to be much better in control of. If entire freedom of everything means that people live divided, in poverty, exploited, plagued by suicide, mental health issues, obesity and mass shootings, then maybe the way the West has shaped in the last 50 years is not all that great which everyone wants us
Other countries have other issues, but honestly, after being to many many other places and far East I can only say that these problems look minor in comparison to what I observe in the West.
yes and no. It appears that nothing is done to prevent or fix since mainstream media do not report anything.
The US has the largest number of doctors of "functional medicine", which contrary to the rest, seek to find the root causes of disease, and many times find them and restore health with supplements, probiotics, life style changes and toxin avoidance.
For the hardliners that deny functional medicine, I recommend to read about the full story of Dr Terry Wahls. TL;DR a professor with the best treatment for MS by many top doctors deteriorated to being in a wheelchair and she cured herself by reading the scientific literature, understanding the whole body and doing a different treatment. She now treats MS patients who who has heard of her? So fixes exist but are unknown.
But dealing with that chaos, at that scale, produces lessons and learning that won't happen anywhere else, other than probably India.
Why is this always a fallback reference point? It is demonstrably false[0,1,2,3] and is continually regurgitated - as if the continued repetition would make it consequently true. There are countries in Europe that are far more diverse than the United States. Full stop.
>But dealing with that chaos, at that scale, produces lessons and learning that won't happen anywhere else, other than probably India.
You could start with your immediate neighbours, yeah? Canada and Mexico are both far more diverse than the United States and would - by your own argument - be far more chaotic than anything the United States or Europe has to deal with, yeah?
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_ranked_by_et...
 - https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/07/18/the-most-an...
 - https://www.atlasandboots.com/worlds-most-diverse-country/
 - https://archive.fo/9AV1K
Sort the first table by rank US - 87 UK -109 France - 117 Germany - 148. When we talk about the West who else is anyone referring to? Denmark - 144. Norway - 146.
My comment is in response to someone separating the US from the west, not US compared to the rest of the world. So don't be in such a hurry to react.
The data shows the US is more diverse than other western countries.
Population is another important factor. What happens in a city of 10 million people and what happens in a country of 10 million people is very different. I come from India and have lived in both the US and Europe. My city has a population somewhere between Ireland and Norway but it's impossible to handle social issues the way those countries do or use them as models precisely because of the population density and diversity.
I gave you the data, you did a cursory look over it, cherry-picked the data points you wanted, and then continued on with your belief that you are correct.
If you take offense to my frustrations at having heard this for the three-thousandth time, then I do apologise but this tired, old cliche is burning itself out faster than a B1 in a binary system.
>Sort the first table by rank US - 87 UK -109 France - 117 Germany - 148. When we talk about the West who else is anyone referring to? Denmark - 144. Norway - 146.
>The data shows the US is more diverse than other western countries.
From the exact same table that you referenced:
Bosnia and Herzegovina - 41, Latvia - 61, Switzerland - 63, Belgium - 65, Estonia - 77, Moldova - 78, Spain - 82
Now back to:
>When we talk about the West who else is anyone referring to?
From a non-American exceptionalism perspective, when we mention the west we are generally speaking about the countries that make up the western world, not just the United States, yeah? ...or we can even go so far as to say countries that have been directly influenced by or have direct political affiliations with countries in the Western Hemisphere. ...or if you want to go Soviet-era, the west could just be any country that has any form of democracy.
It does not, as the data I originally referenced proves. Even limited to just the Northern and Western Hemispheres, Canada and Mexico are far more diverse and have cities that are just as densely populated.
>My city has a population somewhere between Ireland and Norway but it's impossible to handle social issues the way those countries do or use them as models precisely because of the population density and diversity.
This makes no sense. They all have forms of representative democracies, county governments, city governments, etc. Why do you believe it's "easier" for these areas to handle social issues and that it comes down to the sole factor of diversity and/or population density...? Do you honestly believe that differences do not exist in the political spectrum in homogeneous areas? Are you not aware that there have been periods where countries didn't have official governments for this reason (e.g.: Ireland and Sweden)?
The "West" never existed. There are hundreds of languages, cultures and paths in history.
Your criticism of "poverty, exploited, plagued by suicide, mental health issues, obesity and mass shootings" is grounded in reality but you framed it in a completely one-sided way.
Dont disagree, but this comes part and parcel with being a global superpower. When USSR was alive, we had 2 of them.
If you look at EU policy as france and germany protecting their perceived interests by targeting US tech companies it
starts making sense, I think a rule of thumb there is: "if it hurts google it should be law".
It does not. In a preliminary evaluation, there are 26 companies that would match the criterias, 11 are not americans, 4 of them (that's 1/6th) are even french companies to begin with.
• Vente de biens: Alibaba, Amazon, Apple, Ebay, Google, Groupon, Rakuten, Schibsted, Wish, Zalando.
• Intermédiaire de services: Amadeus, Axel Springer, Booking, Expedia, Match.com, Randstad, Recruit, Sabre, Travelport Worldwide, Tripadvisor, Uber.
• Publicité en ligne: Amazon, Criteo, Ebay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Verizon.
The point is to catch up with something everyone else has figured out: that the value is in the users data. Investors have caught up to it and acted on it, so did VC, so did companies, so did everyone ... Except governments. If the data is what you extract your value from, then it should be normal that it is what you are taxed on.
And Criteo too, they're the forgotten Data-kraken of Europe. Just go watch their Marketing Material!
Considering the rhetoric leading to this tax and the french government's many raids and failed investigations into US companies and their taxes it's difficult even with careful wording for the french government to deny the actual target of this tax in a WTO type setting.
They have been playing the system using different tax evasion schemes. France makes a law to force them to pay their fair due.
It's targeting tech giants, not US companies. "Any digital company with revenue of more than €750m - of which at least €25m is generated in France"
> "Any digital company with revenue of more than €750m - of which at least €25m is generated in France"
That sounds pretty non-discriminatory.
If you want to have a meaningful contribution, you should use facts and logical reasoning.
And don;t forget that only the French sourced revenue is taxed.
The law is directed to companies fitting these criteria:
- advertisement (Alibaba, Amazon, Apple, Ebay, Google, Groupon, Rakuten, Schibsted, Wish, Zalando.)
- sale of personal data (Amadeus, Axel Springer, Booking, Expedia, Match.com, Randstad, Recruit, Sabre, Travelport Worldwide, Tripadvisor, Uber.)
- intermediary platforms (Amazon, Criteo, Ebay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Verizon)
Don't forget that most of these companies abuse the system to avoid paying tax in most EU countries, for example airbnb paid something like 70k of tax in 2015 in France (a top google engineer would pay more tax than the whole airbnb business), because the only french based airbnb entity was a sub company which was used as an intermediary between France and Ireland. Of course it's in their interest/right to use as many loopholes as they legally can, but I don't see why France wouldn't update their tax laws to close of few of these loopholes and accommodate these new business model / business practices.
And I think the impact isn't even that big for the "abusers". I have the impression that this kind of company is so optimized and thinking in a way that once the tax advantage goes they will still be much more competitive than companies currently not profiting from said loop holes.
“This is discriminatory ...” is a statememt, not a fact.