EU ready to go it alone on taxation of digital firms

The European Union is ready to go it alone with taxing digital services of firms like Google, Amazon, Facebook or Apple if there is no global deal on such a tax this year, European Economic Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said on Thursday.

He was responding to the decision by the United States to pull out of negotiations on a global solution to taxing digital services on Wednesday.

“I very much regret the U.S.’ move to put the brakes on international talks on taxation of the digital economy. I hope that this will be a temporary setback rather than a definitive stop,” Gentiloni said.

“The European Commission wants a global solution to bring corporate taxation into the 21st century – and we believe the OECD’s two-pillar approach is the right one,” he said.

“But if that proves impossible this year, we have been clear that we will come forward with a new proposal at EU level<’ he said.

Reporting by Jan Strupczewski