President Donald Trump threatened France and French President Emanuel Macron after the latter signed a new digital tax on American tech companies.
“If anybody taxes them, it should be their home Country, the USA,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “We will announce a substantial reciprocal action on Macron’s foolishness shortly.”
Macron signed a 3 percent tax hike on revenue from large digital companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon, despite warnings from the Trump administration. Other European countries have signaled interest in passing a similar tax.
Trump hinted that he could level additional tariffs on French products, such as wine.
“I’ve always liked French wines better than American wines even though I don’t drink,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office later on Friday. “I like the way they look.”
He joked to Fox News reporter John Roberts about his wine-drinking habits.
“You’re a man that enjoys wine,” he said. “You just won’t be enjoying French wine anymore.”
Trump said he still had a “good relationship” with French President Emmanuel Macron and recently spoke with him about the conflict.
“They should not have done this,” he said.
The White House issued a statement detailing their disappointment with France’s new tax.
The United States is extremely disappointed by France’s decision to adopt a digital services tax at the expense of U.S. companies and workers. France’s unilateral measure appears to target innovative U.S. technology firms that provide services in distinct sectors of the economy. It also demonstrates France’s lack of commitment to the ongoing OECD negotiations. The Trump Administration has consistently stated that it will not sit idly by and tolerate discrimination against U.S.-based firms. The U.S. Trade Representative has already launched a Section 301 investigation into France’s digital services tax, and the Administration is looking closely at all other policy tools.