Apr 24, 2020

Common sense in uncommon times

The French have a good idea: corporations that duck tax obligations can’t get financial support from the state they fail to support:

French finance minister Bruno Le Maire has said companies registered in tax havens, or with subsidiaries in such places, cannot benefit from the billions of euros of support being provided by the government to limit the economic damage of the coronavirus pandemic.

France has abandoned its budget deficit and public debt targets since the start of the Covid-19 crisis, announcing €110bn in emergency funding in order to stave off business bankruptcies and prevent a surge in mass unemployment of the sort that has hit the US.

“It goes without saying that if a business has its tax base or subsidiaries in a tax haven — and I want to say this with a lot of force — it cannot benefit from the state’s financial help,” Mr Le Maire told Franceinfo radio on Thursday. He also confirmed that companies that received state aid could not pay dividends or buy back their own shares.

Read more here.