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France Telecom Loses EU Court Appeal Over $1.37 Billion Aid

France Telecom SA, France’s largest phone company, lost an appeal at the European Union’s highest court against an EU order that forced it to pay about 1.02 billion euros ($1.37 billion) in back taxes to the French government.

The EU regulator’s “decision finding that that aid existed and ordering its recovery is valid,” the EU Court of Justice in Luxembourg said in a ruling today. It upheld a lower EU court’s ruling in 2009 “that the special tax regime to which France Telecom was subject constituted state aid.”