The rally in Venice rose to prominence after the Group of Seven advanced economies overcame years of division this month to engage on an overview of changes to corporate tax rules and rates. But around 140 countries in total have to approve the details, and some have expressed concern about the impact the changes could have on their economies and larger businesses.
One of them is Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe, with whom Le Maire will meet informally in meetings with EU finance ministers in Luxembourg on Thursday and Friday. The discussion will seek to address Ireland’s reservations about setting an overall minimum rate, which could undermine its efforts to attract multinational companies.
The French minister will then visit Poland on Sunday and meet with Chinese, Indian and Russian officials next week.
“We had a breakthrough described as historic at the G-7 in London a few days ago. Now, we have to make this breakthrough concrete during the G-20 in Venice in mid-July, that is the most important thing, ”said Le Maire.
G-7 agreement responds to US demand for a minimum corporate tax rate of “at least 15%” on foreign income and paves the way for levies on multinationals in countries where they earn money, instead of where they are based. This would allow governments to get a share of tax revenues from U.S. tech giants such as Amazon.com Inc. and Facebook Inc.
The Mayor said that France supports a proposal to segment the operations of Amazon to separate the most profitable companies so that the tech giant is covered by new rules on the sharing of taxing rights between countries.
“It’s a question of fairness. The big winners from the crisis are the digital giants and they are the ones who pay the least taxes, ”said Le Maire. “All the digital giants, including Amazon, have to pay their fair share.
– With the help of Katharina Rosskopf and John Follain