Capital calls: Amazon’s tax victory in the EU is a thing of the past

(The author is a columnist for Reuters Breakingviews. The opinions expressed are their own.)

Amazon boxes are seen stacked for delivery in the Manhattan neighborhood of New York City on January 29, 2016.

MILAN (Reuters Breakingviews) – Concise overview of global finance.


OLD FRONT. won in yesterday’s tax battle. Europe’s second-highest court ruled on Wednesday that the e-commerce giant did not have to comply with a European Commission order to pay $ 303 million in back taxes to Luxembourg. The verdict is further proof that Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager’s tax fight against US tech giants is not working. His attempt to use EU state aid rules to dismantle comfortable tax deals had already backfired in September, when the same court overturned a € 13 billion tax order. against Apple.

For Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, however, the decision could be a Pyrrhic victory. A US proposal for a 21% minimum global corporate tax rate on foreign income has revitalized a ten-year campaign against tax evasion. If implemented, the plan would have less incentive for internet giants to base themselves in low-tax jurisdictions such as Ireland or Luxembourg. The tax war has already evolved. (By Lisa Jucca)

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Earlier in capital calls:

Ubisoft’s gaming supertanker starts spinning

EU banking duo are heading in opposite directions

Leaner should mean better at UniCredit

The TaylorMade tuning is perfect for the course

The flops of the one-woman show in Japan


Reuters Breakingviews is the world’s leading source for financial agenda-setting information. As the Reuters brand for financial commentary, we dissect big business and economic stories as they circulate the world every day. A global team of around 30 correspondents in New York, London, Hong Kong and other major cities provide real-time expert analysis.

Sign up for a free trial of our full service at and follow us on Twitter @Breakingviews and to All opinions expressed are those of the authors.

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