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France Approves 'Millionaire Tax' Targeting Businesses, Not Citizens

France Approves 'Millionaire Tax' Targeting Businesses, Not Citizens
The French flag flies under the Arc de Triomphe.
Image credit: Reuters

The French government has caught the ire of local entrepreneurs with the legalization of a "millionaire tax" on companies that pay salaries of more than 1 million euros ($1.37 million).

Employers will have to pay a 50 percent tax on the portion of any salaries exceeding 1 million euros for 2013 and 2014, though the rate is effectively 75 percent when considering other duties and charges.

The law was originally designed to charge individuals, but France's Constitutional Council rejected that notion last year, stating that 66 percent was the taxable limit upon million-euro incomes.

Related: The Road Ahead For Entrepreneurs And Tax Reform

Approved on Sunday, the sweeping repercussions of the law will affect approximately 470 French companies--as well as a dozen soccer teams--to raise an estimated 210 million euros annually.

President Francois Hollande had vowed throughout his campaign to enlist the wealthy to help pull France from financial crisis--much to the dismay of business leaders, foreign investors and all of the nation's soccer clubs, who threatened (and later backed down from) a strike.

The French actor Gerard Depardieu even reportedly fled the country for Russia in response to the proposed super tax earlier this year, as many have accused Hollande--who has publicly claimed to dislike the rich--of being anti-business.

Related: Le Boat Lets Visitors Savor the South of France

Geoff Weiss is a staff writer at Entrepreneur.com.

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