US industrial giant General Electric (GE) resorted to tax optimization in France between 2015 and 2020, which allowed it to transfer profits of up to 800 million euros abroad, according to information published on Sunday, May 29 by the investigative site. Reveal.
These practices concern the French gas turbine entity GE in Belfort, where in December 2021 it was sued by employees who accurately condemned its tax optimization scheme. These employees lodged a complaint with the “Fraud on the right of employee participation”.
Since the acquisition of Belfort’s turbine plant from Alstom in 2015, the American multinational company would cause profits of 800 million euros to leak to Switzerland and the US state of Delaware, a deficit of between 150 and 300 million for the French tax authorities. , according to factory balance sheets and audits of consulted companies Reveal.
Under this financial package, Belfort and “contract manufacturing unit” Where ” Service provider “ GE’s Swiss subsidiaries, which sell and generate most of the profits. The power plant’s turbine factory also paid royalties to its U.S. parent company for using its brand and technology.
No tax audit
Bercy would have previously confirmed the tax regime under the “trust” with the tax administration, specifies Publish. Following this procedure, which was introduced in 2013 by the Ministry of Finance with a handful of companies, including GE, the company prepares its tax plan before the tax office, which undertakes not to initiate an audit.
“GE respects the tax rules of the countries in which the company operates”replied, Sunday, a spokesman for the industrialist. “All companies operating and producing in more than one country have a transfer pricing policy to ensure that all intercompany transactions are at market price. [c’est-à-dire à des prix qui s’appliqueraient aux transactions entre parties non liées] »continued.
In a subpoena filed in December 2021, the Sud Industrie trade union and the GE Social and Economic Committee (CSE) accused the company of reducing the tax result of the gas turbine entity Belfort (GE EPF) by transferring assets to subsidiaries abroad. where taxation is more advantageous. They call for participation in the period 2015-2020.
The CSE has estimated the profits in tax havens at the expense of GE EPF in recent years at around one billion euros. EDF has since announced the purchase of part of the site’s activities for $ 1.2 billion.