France to impose digital tax this year regardless of any new international levy

France will tax big digital businesses this year whether there is progress or not towards an international deal on a levy, its finance minister said on Thursday, adding such a tax had never been more legitimate or more necessary.

Nearly 140 countries from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) are negotiating the first major rewriting of tax rules in more than a generation, to take better account of the rise of big tech companies such as Amazon, Facebook, Apple and Google that often book profit in low-tax countries.

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