France’s Hollande criticises huge US fines against corporate Europe

President Francois Hollande of France.

FRENCH President Francois Hollande on Wednesday, accused the United States of abusing its power by demanding multi-billion dollar fines from European companies while shielding its own firms.

In an interview, Hollande said the fines – most recently $14 billion against Germany’s Deutsche Bank for selling toxic mortgage-backed securities in the United States – were one reason why he could not support a U.S./EU free-trade deal, Reuters said.

“When the (European) Commission goes after Google or digital giants which do not pay the taxes they should in Europe, America takes offence,” the Socialist leader told L’Obs magazine six months before presidential elections.

“And yet, they quite shamelessly demand 8 billion from BNP or 5 billion from Deutsche Bank.”