France - Britain - 
Article published the Tuesday 01 January 2013 - Latest update : Tuesday 01 January 2013

France's Jean-Michel Jarre in talks on new music school in London

Jean-Michel Jarre
d.andré

By RFI

France’s pioneering electronic composer Jean-Michel Jarre is considering helping to set up and run an electronic music academy in London. 

The French musician issued a communiqué on Tuesday in which he also announced that he had held informal talks in recent months about the possible involvement of his company Jarre Technologies in the new 'Tech City' in London.

The musician was keen to dispel any suspicion that he is leaving France for tax reasons.
"For years Jean-Michel Jarre has had personal and professional relationships with England, and these have never had anything to do with any political measures in France", said the statement.

His entourage stressed that Jarre is a French citizen, lives in Paris and that his production company has always been settled in Paris. They deny any suggestions that an involvement in London's Tech City might be for tax reasons.

Jean-Michel Jarre is known all over the world for his spectacular concerts and his hit albums include Oxygène (1976) and Equinoxe (1978).

His company Jarre Technologies makes products lke the AeroPad One, a dock speaker for iPods, iPads and iPhones.

David Cameron’s office confirmed on Tuesday that the internationally-acclaimed musician had held talks with its officials about London's media and technology hub.

"There are a growing number of businesses and entrepreneurs from across the world, who want to be part of the technology cluster in east London and we are keen for that to continue,” said a spokesperson for Cameron.

Tech City is a project to transform the Old Street roundabout in east London and its environs into a European centre of media and technology innovation for blue-chip firms, investors and start-up companies.

Cameron announced a 60 million euro injection into the project last month and he hopes the hub will benefit from a 50 per cent tax relief on the first 120,000 euros in seed investment.

The news that Jarre is considering furthering his business operations in London will give ammunition to France’s opposition UMP politicians.

They complain that French tax laws and what they maintain is a hostile business climate are driving too many wealth-creators and artists to leave France.

In recent months a string of high profile French business and entertainment names have announced plans to leave the country, the most controversial being cinema star Gérard Depardieu.

Last week France's highest court struck down the highly controversial proposed 75 percent tax rate on individual income above a million euros a year.

The 75 percent tax rate in France was a flagship promise of the election campaign that saw Francois Hollande defeat incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy in the May 2012 presidential election.

 

tags: Britain - Business - Culture - France - French music - Music - Tax - Wealth
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