Apple CEO visits France, meets Macron


Apple boss Tim Cook, after meeting with the company’s suppliers and developers in northern France and visiting graves at the site of the Normandy landings, met with Emmanuel Macron in Paris on Monday, amid a drive by the French president and other European leaders to force a number tech and web-based giants to pay taxes where their activities are based.

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Apple  Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook met Emmanuel Macron in Paris Monday, and according to French officials he didn’t push back against calls by the French president and European allies to get technology giants to pay more taxes, reports Bloomberg.

The two met at the French presidential palace at the request of Cook.

Macron is leading a group of countries – including Germany, Italy and Spain – that are seeking a way to plug the European loopholes that allow some companies to minimize taxes by funneling profits to jurisdictions such as Ireland or the Netherlands. Macron’s office said the two didn’t discuss past tax disputes, but Cook accepted that fiscal laws worldwide are shifting toward making companies pay tax where money is actually earned.

Apple officials in Paris didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Cook also met with the company’s French suppliers and developers during his visit to France.

While setting out as a champion for tech companies and flagging his desire to make his country “a startup nation”, Macron and his ministers have been increasingly vocal about companies like Apple, Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Facebook Inc., Inc. and Airbnb Inc. needing to change their ways. 

Macron said last month in Tallinn, Estonia, during a European Union summit, that internet giants don’t contribute to the common good.

Meanwhile online retailer last week was slapped with a European Union order to pay 250 million euros ($294 million) plus interest in back taxes to Luxembourg, becoming the latest US giant to run afoul of the bloc’s rules on government subsidies.

Read more of this report from Bloomberg.


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