Donald Trump is investigating whether France’s Digital Services Tax is unfair trade practice target US tech majors with a likely path to developing retaliatory measures. The French parliament last week passed the new levy into law.
"The president has directed that we investigate the effects of this legislation and determine whether it is discriminatory or unreasonable and burdens or restricts United States commerce," the US Trade Representative say
The DST would impose a 3% levy on total annual revenues and apply to companies with total annual revenues of at least €750 million globally and €25 million in France.
“The services covered are ones where US firms are global leaders,” says the US Trade Representative. “The structure of the proposed new tax as well as statements by officials suggest that France is unfairly targeting the tax at certain US-based technology companies.”
Austria, Italy, Spain and the UK are all considering introducing similar taxes so the US response may need to take into account those jurisdictions too.