France pushing the EU to regulate global internet companies

France will push the European Union to adopt stricter tax and privacy rules for global internet companies – such as Google, and Facebook – at the next summit of European leaders at the end of October. The objective is to counter their growing dominant position over online commerce and services, and to make it possible for smaller actors to develop.

Fleur Pellerin, France’s minister for the digital economy, wants to give powers to regulatory authorities to act on an ex ante basis; to link the tax base for technology groups to the place where the profits are made; and to tackle internet surveillance with stricter laws on privacy. She hopes a legislative proposal can be envisaged by mid-2014.