The executive continues to be questioned about its use of consulting services, which exceeded one billion euros in 2021, according to a recent report by a Senate inquiry committee. The government spokesman, Gabriel Attal, acknowledged on Friday March 25 on Franceinfo, “an increase in the number of expert firms to which the State had recourse during the health crisis to support the deployment of the vaccination campaign, in particular”.
“Does that mean that we consider that recourse to experts can or must be done without a framework? Of course notdeclared Mr. Attal, invited as a support of Emmanuel Macron. The President of the Republic had the opportunity to recall it. It has to be done sparingly. »
“A billion, is it still parsimony? »asked the journalist Marc Fauvelle. ” No. What I am saying is that there was an exceptional situation during the health crisis at a time when the objective was to be as fast as possible and therefore to mobilize forces, experts, skills outside the State to come and support the effort »replied Gabriel Attal, arguing that“There is even a target that has been set to reduce expenditure for 2022 by 15%. Now things are settled. »
“I want all multinationals to pay taxes where they work”
“It shocks me like everyone else”, had for his part reacted Emmanuel Macron, Wednesday evening on M6, about the fact that McKinsey would not have paid corporate tax for ten years, according to the revelations of the report of the senators on the cabinet. However, he said he was not scandalized by the idea that “that the government, that the communities have recourse to expert firms”. “The criterion, for me, is that it must not replace things that we know how to do ourselves and that it be done in a transparent and controllable way”said the candidate president.
“I want all multinationals to pay taxes where they work”pleaded Emmanuel Macron. “This consulting firm that has not paid its taxes will catch up and pay its taxes? »asked the journalist Xavier de Moulins. “He can’t catch up because he used the rules. The tax administration will look; if he has defrauded, he will pay them. If he did not defraud, but used tax optimization schemes, he will not pay them and you will not go looking for them, because the law is the law! »replied the President of the Republic.
The McKinsey firm “will pay what it owes to the taxpayers and to the French State”the Minister of Economy and Finance, Bruno Le Maire, also said on Sunday. “We are going to make sure that McKinsey pays the taxes it owes to France, like all companies”he had declared to the “Grand Jury” of RTL, Le Figaro and LCI. “All procedures have already been initiated by the Directorate General of Public Finance, McKinsey will pay”added the minister. Reacting to the accusations of the senators, McKinsey, for his part, assured to respect “all applicable French tax and social rules” and said to have paid corporation tax “the years when the firm made a profit in France”.
The Senate commission of inquiry seized justice for false testimony
On Friday, the Senate commission of inquiry into consulting firms announced that it had taken legal action on suspicion of false testimony after the hearing of Karim Tadjeddine, one of the associate directors of McKinsey, on the tax practices of his firm.
During his hearing before the Senate in January, Mr. Tadjeddine assured that McKinsey paid corporate tax in France. However, by consulting documents from the tax administration, the senators realized that McKinsey had paid no corporate tax from 2011 to 2020, using classic tax optimization mechanisms.
Testimony before parliamentary committees is strictly regulated. Speaking under oath, those interviewed are liable to five years’ imprisonment and a fine of 75,000 euros in the event of perjury. Convictions are, however, extremely rare: the first was pronounced in 2017 against a pulmonologist who had concealed his links with the oil group Total – since renamed TotalEnergies.