PositionGovernment Activity - Brief Article

An association of local authorities has lodged a complaint with the European Commission against France regarding state aid, arguing that they have suffered as a result of the derogatory regime applied by France Telecom in respect of its local taxes, according to the August 8 issue of the French daily Les Echos. Questioned by the daily, a spokesman for the Commission indicated that the complaint, which raises some fairly complex questions, "is still being examined". No decision has yet been taken on whether or not to open a formal investigation into state aid.

The derogatory regime, which essentially concerns trading taxes, has resulted since its introduction in 1990, in a "Euro 2.4 billion tax gift (Euro 200 million per year) to the French telecommunications operator", according to the daily. It quotes a report to Parliament from the Ministry of Finance which was never published...

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