Thursday, 24 October 2013

French football clubs to strike over 75 percent tax

The biggest football clubs in France are far from happy with the prospect of having to pay a 75 percent tax on the salaries of their millionaire players and on Thursday announced they will go on strike.

The UCPF (Union of Professional Football Clubs), comprising France’s top two divisions, Ligue 1 and Ligue 2, had previously threatened industrial action against the ‘super-tax.’

The announcement came after the UCPF met today to finalize what form their protest will take, with France’s National Assembly scheduled to debate the new tax this week.

The president of UCPF Jean-Pierre Louvel, said: "We are involved in a historic protest and have a real determination to save football by having a weekend without games at the end of November."

The union’s executive committee agreed unanimously last week to protest in some way against the tax rate, which is set to be in force for 2014 and 2015, and therefore applied to earnings for 2013 and 2014.

France’s sports minister Velerie Fourneyron confirmed in September that the country’s football clubs would not be exempt from the new 75 percent super tax.

The tax, one of President Fran├žois Hollande’s flagship election proposals, is included in the government’s 2014 budget, but has not yet been approved by parliament.

Under the proposal, companies will be liable to pay the 75 tax rate for the portion of employees' salaries above €1 million annually.

And despite warnings from France’s football chiefs that the French top flight would be ruined if clubs had to pay the tax, Fourneyron insisted there will be no exceptions to the rule.

“There are no special measures. Football will be affected by the tax on high incomes,” the minister told Le Figaro at the time.

“Why should clubs be exempt from this tax?” she added.

The honorable minister obviously doesnt derive joy in football

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