World Briefs: EU's plan to tax Internet giants to be unveiled soon

EU's plan to tax Internet giants to be unveiled soon

PARIS • The EU will soon unveil a plan for taxing major Internet companies like Amazon and Facebook by imposing a levy of 2 to 6 per cent on revenues in every country where they operate, French finance minister Bruno Le Maire said yesterday.

"The range will be from 2 to 6 per cent; but closer to 2 than to 6," Mr Le Maire told the Journal du Dimanche newspaper.

The European Commission has said it will present by the end of the month an overhaul of its tax rules, which currently allow US digital economy giants to report their income from across the bloc in any member state.

That leads them to pick low-tax nations like Ireland, the Netherlands or Luxembourg, depriving other nations of their share of the revenue even though they may account for more of a company's earnings.


PM May defends decision on 'passporting' rights

LONDON • Prime Minister Theresa May defended her decision to rule out so-called "passporting" rights for banks after Brexit, saying Britain could not become a "rule taker" when it came to financial services.

Mrs May said her vision for future ties with the European Union was a credible one and she was confident of reaching a good Brexit deal, in an interview broadcast yesterday but recorded on Friday after a speech in which she had appealed for more flexibility from the bloc.

Setting out her thinking in greater detail, Mrs May said the financial services sector was too important to the British economy for Brussels to retain control of it under the existing "passporting" arrangement.

Passporting rules allow EU finance companies to sell their services across the 28-member bloc with a local licence, rather than getting a licence to operate in each member country where it does business.


Scandal-hit ex-DPM raises doubts of baby's paternity

SYDNEY • An affair that led to the resignation of Australia's deputy prime minister took a bizarre twist yesterday after he questioned the paternity of the baby carried by his partner and former aide.

Mr Barnaby Joyce, who left his wife of 24 years for his former adviser Vikki Campion - told Fairfax Media in an interview published late Saturday that the identity of the biological father was "a grey area".

He claimed Sydney's Daily Telegraph, which broke the story of the affair in early February, had "never even asked if it was Joyce's bundle".

The reporter who revealed the affair said on Twitter yesterday that Mr Joyce's claims that his office was not asked about paternity were untrue.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 05, 2018, with the headline 'World Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe