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Walmart Mexico pays Mexico about $359 million in back taxes

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Walmart de Mexico said Monday it has paid the Mexican government the equivalent of about $359 million in taxes for its 2014 sale of a restaurant chain known as VIP’s after tax authorities demanded it.

The payment appears to mark a victory for President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who has railed against what he claims is tax evasion by big companies.

Walmart confirmed Monday it had paid the tax bill, but it was unclear if Alsea, the buyer, would have to pay anything as well. Alsea, which operates restaurant chains, claimed it had paid all its taxes.

López Obrador has played hardball with companies before. In 2019 he forced gas pipeline companies to renegotiate contracts he said cost too much.

López Obrador forced companies from the U.S., Canada and Mexico to restructure fees and accept about 30% lower profit margins.

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