French government ponders change to sports rights law – report

The French government is considering implementing major changes to its tax law on broadcast rights for sporting events, according to Le Figaro newspaper.

Implemented in 2000, the ‘Buffet’ tax under France’s Finance Act dictates that five per cent of revenue from the sale of broadcast rights for sporting events or competitions organised by entities operating in France is directed to the National Centre for the Development of Sport (CNDS).

However, while this should result in the CNDS receiving €43m ($55.9m) per year, the report said that there is currently a shortfall of €13.5m.

The Ministry of Sport is now said to be seeking to counter this by altering the law to cover any games or international as well as domestic competitions. Le Figaro said this change would result in pay-television broadcaster beIN Sport and commercial broadcasters TF1 and M6 being liable for taxes of €3m, €2m and €1m respectively for their coverage of the Uefa Euro 2016 football tournament.

However, politicians are said to be seeking to exempt a number of sporting events from any changes to the law.