Historic G7 agreement: En-route to fairer taxes on big tech

taxes-on-big-tech

The seven most powerful economies in the world, assembled in the Group of 7 (G7), have reached an historic agreement on taxes on big tech: multinationals with a profit margin above 10% will have to pay at least 20% of their taxes where they produce profits and not, as many do, in countries with low tax rates where they base their operating headquarters. Moreover, these powers have agreed to set 15% as the minimum tax rate, lowering the proposal from the United States, which was 21%. France was also hoping for a higher common rate. 

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City councils facing the digital transition: Barcelona proposes online delivery tax

online-delivery-tax

The complex debate on taxation of large Internet platforms affects all levels, from the large institutions involved in global governance – such as the G20 and IMF – to city councils in cities that have around two million people, such as Barcelona. For a while now the Catalan city council has been working to implement a tax on home delivery of online purchases. The measure is after an essential objective: to defend the traditional commercial structure and small businesses from the rise of e-commerce, a market dominated by multinational platforms such as Amazon and AliExpress. 

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Big tech lobbying in Brussels: A lot of money. Too much influence?

big-tech-lobbying

It’s no surprise the Silicon Valley tech giants are paying close attention to regulatory activity in the European Union. As of March 2015, when then-Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker announced the Digital Single Market, Europe has been setting a distinct profile in its conception of digitalization, a profile that is increasingly uncomfortable for the so-called Big Five or GAFAM – Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, and Microsoft. Some of the issues the Commission is prioritising through the Digital Services Act and the Digital Markets Act are potentially very dangerous for the business model of companies like Google and Facebook. And we’re talking about a market of more than 450 million people. 

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Don’t say marketplace, say Amazon

marketplace

A recent report by analysis firm Credit Suisse predicted that Inditex, the Spanish multinational that owns the Zara brand, would end up selling its garments on Zalando, a German marketplace. The report foresaw that the same would happen with another important European textile giant, H&M. It would be, according to Credit Suisse, not only a logical step but also a necessary one in the face of how rapidly physical commerce is evolving, which is in a sharp decline that has been accelerated by the pandemic. 

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‘Save your zone’, one more step in defence of European sovereignty

save-your-zone-always

The ‘Save your zone’ campaign has seen significant development institutionally. During November and December, the EADT sent hundreds of letters explaining its position to the mayors of the main cities in Spain, Italy, France and Germany, as well as to dozens of trade associations, employers and unions. 

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The battle for local businesses as a symbol of European digital sovereignty

battle-for-local-commerce

Should it be of interest, we are reproducing an article written by our president, Ricardo Rodríguez Contreras, in the Spanish newspaper El Economista, about our ‘Save your zone’ campaign.

All you have to do is walk down the shopping streets of any Spanish city to verify a reality: the lock downs and restrictions to fight the pandemic have put nearby businesses on the edge of a cliff. According to the Spanish Trade Confederation (CEC), some 67,500 establishments, 15% of the total, have already closed forever. And in the short term, almost 50,000 more could fall, estimates the same source. One in four businesses could disappear in just one year. 

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‘Save your zone’: A campaign going beyond local business

save-your-zone

Since the end of November, the European Association for Digital Transition has been doing the ’save your zone’ campaign in the four leading economies of the European Union – Spain, France, Italy and Germany. With this initiative, we are looking to defend nearby stores during a Christmas season that, for many businesses, will decide their survival. 

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After the US launch of Amazon Pharmacy, is Europe next?

amazon-pharmacy

Amazon’s announcement last week that it was launching its own online pharmacy not only shook the US drugs market but also raised questions here in Europe. The online retail giant has already reshaped the shopping and shipping landscape. Now, it plans to enter the prescription and over the counter medicine market worth the equivalent of €260 billion in the US alone.

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OK, Amazon is too powerful. What should we do?

amazon-is-too-powerful

Amazon was born in 1994 as a bookstore, because it was clear to Jeff Bezos that book sales were a perfect fit for e-commerce. The founder of Amazon developed the right idea at the right time, and the rest is an impressive story of business success: Amazon is worth more than a trillion and a half dollars on the stock exchange today. To give some context, this is a figure that far exceeds the combined GDP of Spain and Portugal.

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#saveyourzone: we call on European mayors to defend local business against e-commerce giants

defend-local-business

It is the decisive moment of the year for businesses with the arrival of  ‘Black Friday’ and the Christmas celebrations. But here, too, 2020 is different: for many European businesses, whether they close the year better or worse over the coming weeks isn’t what’s at stake. What’s at stake, frankly, is their survival. If they do not perform well, they will shutter the windows forever, impoverishing the social and economic fabric of European cities. 

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