PARIS, December 30 (RIA Novosti) – France’s highest court has struck down a controversial government proposal to impose a “super-tax” on the wealthy, deeming it discriminatory and therefore unconstitutional.
The proposal, introduced by Socialist President Francois Hollande, stipulates the implementation of a 75% tax rate on individual annual earnings above $1.30 million for a period of two years as part of a strategy to reduce France's public spending deficit.
The measure has been included in the 2013 budget law and was due to take effect from January 1.
In its ruling on Saturday, the French Constitutional Council said the measure failed to guarantee the equality of taxpayers because, unlike other forms of income tax in France, it was to be applied to individual earnings rather than household incomes.
The French government was quick to respond to the court ruling by saying it would revise and resubmit the proposal, which was a key element of Hollande’s election strategy and most likely propelled him to the presidency in May.
“The government will propose a new system that conforms with the principles laid down by the decision of the Constitutional Council," Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said in a statement on Friday.
The critics of the measure believe that the “super-tax” would affect only 1,500 people and would prompt the exodus of wealthy French citizens to countries with lower tax rates.
Legendary French actor Gerard Depardieu has recently renounced his French citizenship in protest against unfair taxation and said he was moving to neighboring tax-friendly Belgium.
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