The US government is blocking international talks on the cross-border taxation of digital companies, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Wednesday, as quoted by Reuters.
He added that Europe should be ready to rely on a European tax if no global deal is reached by the end of the year.
"It's very clear, the United States doesn't want a digital tax (deal) at the OECD. So they are making obstacles that prevent us from reaching an agreement even though the technical work is done... If the US blockage is confirmed by year end, we are counting on the European Union to make a formal proposal to tax digital activities in the first quarter of 2021," Le Maire said, as quoted by the agency.
In July, the US announced that it will impose additional 25 percent tariffs on goods from France, estimated at $1.3 billion, in response to the French digital tax, but will suspend the implementation for up to 180 days. The new tariffs will affect French cosmetics and handbags, the US Trade Representative's office said.
In 2019, US President Donald Trump threatened to impose tariffs on French imports in response to its pushing to introduce a 3% digital service tax on the annual revenues of US tech giants Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon.