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France seeks Euro 356 million in unpaid tax from Booking.com

06/02/2016| 5:36:59 PM| 中文

French tax authorities recently concluded an audit of Booking.com that started in 2013 of the years 2003 through 2012. They are asserting that Booking.com has a permanent establishment in France and are seeking to recover what they claim are unpaid income taxes and value-added taxes.

France’s fiscal authority is claiming Euro 356 million (about $397 million) from Booking.com, a Priceline Group brand and the largest hotel reservations platform online.

A financial document filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the markets watchdog — and first noticed by Paris Match — says, in Priceline Group’s words:

“French tax authorities recently concluded an audit of Booking.com that started in 2013 of the years 2003 through 2012. They are asserting that Booking.com has a permanent establishment in France and are seeking to recover what they claim are unpaid income taxes and value-added taxes (“VAT”).

In December 2015, the French tax authorities issued Booking.com assessments for approximately 356 million Euros, the majority of which would represent penalties and interest.

The Company believes that Booking.com has been, and continues to be, in compliance with French tax law, and the Company intends to contest the assessments.

If the Company is unable to resolve the matter with the French authorities, it would expect to challenge the assessments in the French courts. In order to contest the assessments in court, the Company may be required to pay, upfront, the full amount or a significant part of any such assessments, though any such payment would not constitute an admission by it that it owes the tax.”

Italian tax authorities have also begun a similar investigation. But Priceline Group told the SEC that “that it has been, and continues to be, in compliance with Italian tax law.”

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TAGS: Booking.com | Priceline | France
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