International Diplomat Magazine

UK unveils draft law to tax tech giants


(London) – Britain unveiled draft legislation for a “digital services tax” on global tech giants, which it plans to impose until leading economies reach an agreement on the contentious issue.

The proposed levy, which will be consulted on until September, will target “large digital businesses” and reflect “the value derived from their UK users”, according to the country´s finance ministry.

It said the 2.0 percent tax — which it aims to introduce next April — will not apply to small businesses or those making losses in Britain, in order to protect start-ups.

“This targeted and proportionate digital services tax is designed to keep our tax system in this area both fair and competitive, pending a longer-term international settlement,” Jesse Norman, a Treasury minister, said in a statement.

The ministry published the planned bill on the same day France became the first major economy to impose such a levy, after its parliament passed a law mandating a 3.0 percent tax on internet heavyweights´ annual revenues.

French lawmakers approved the measure in defiance of a probe ordered by US President Donald Trump that could trigger reprisal tariffs.

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