QuickLinks - Taxation and tariffs
Issue no. 179 - 26 November 2000
- VAT: Commission proposes rules on invoicing
The European Commission is proposing to simplify, modernise and harmonise the rules for invoicing in respect of Value Added Tax within the Community. Firms operating within the Internal Market would no longer have to cope with fifteen different sets of legislation on invoicing. At the same time, the Commission is proposing that Member States must recognise the validity of electronical invoices.
Issue no. 175 - 29 October 2000
- USA - IRS Considers Regulating Internet Speech
(Tech Law Journal)
The IRS released a document stating that it is considering whether to issue guidance regarding the application of the Internet Revenue Code to various types of Internet communications by tax exempt entities.
Issue no. 174 - 21 October 2000
- Germany Won't Tax Net Surfers At Work
Even taxation-heavy European countries are having second thoughts about applying too many financial restrictions to the use of online technology. Now the German government has rethought its summer plans to tax the personal use of office PCs for Web surfing.
- EU - View: Europe needs a fair tax
Present duty on the sale of digital products via the internet discriminates against European companies, says Frits Bolkestein.
Issue no. 171 - 1 October 2000
Issue no. 170 - 24 September 2000
- Germany abandons tax on use of the internet at work
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder this week dismissed a proposed tax on businesses for non-work related internet use by employees. The government will still introduce a controvercial copyright tax on high tech manufacturers.
- EU - VAT on Electronic Commerce
Mr Frits Bolkestein Member of the European Commission in charge of Taxation and Internal Market Transatlantic Policy Network Brussels, 20 September 2000
Issue no. 168 - 9 September 2000
Issue no. 166 - 30 July 2000
Issue no. 164 - 15 July 2000
- European Parliament Hears E-Commerce Tax Pitch
The European Parliament in Brussels received the Internet-based value-added tax pitch from EU Commissioner Frits Bolkestein, who explained that - despite American IT company objections - e-commerce should be taxed within the European Union in the same fashion as traditional sales.
Issue no. 161 - 25 June 2000
- EU - IoD criticises Web VAT proposals
European Commission proposals to charge value added tax (VAT) on goods and services supplied over the Internet from outside Europe have been criticised by the Institute of Directors (IoD). According to the IoD, the proposals are logical but will be difficult to enforce. It is warning the change in legislation will lead most non-EU suppliers to register for VAT in Luxembourg, which charges the lowest rate of VAT at 15 per cent.
Issue no. 160 - 17 June 2000
- EU/USA - Brussels taxes US patience on e-business
The US has condemned the European Commission proposal for a new value-added tax regime for electronically delivered consumer services and subscription television as a rash unilateral move that jeopardises hopes of refining the OECD agreement by early next year and threatens global development of e-commerce.
Issue no. 159 - 11 June 2000
Issue no. 152 - 15 April 2000
Issue no. 149 - 26 March 2000
Issue no. 146 - 4 March 2000
Issue no. 143 - 12 February 2000
- EU - Brussels may put VAT on virtual goods
The European Commission is studying a proposal to impose value added tax on music, software and other "virtual" goods bought over the internet. The proposals, due to be announced soon, will bring the sale of music and software into line with the sale of tangible goods such as CDs and books, for which suppliers are required to register for VAT in the European Union.
- USA - Internet success spins web of taxing issues
While entrepreneurs dismiss any prospect of internet tax, a powerful lobby of state governors is pushing for its slice of the taxation cake.
Issue no. 142 - 5 February 2000
Issue no. 140 - 22 January 2000
- USA - Florida Fights to Collect Cyber Taxes
(Law News Network)
Florida stands to lose $1 billion a year in sales-tax revenues by 2002 because of transactions over the Internet that, under existing rules, are exempt from taxation.
Issue no. 137 - 18 December 1999
Issue no. 136 - 12 December 1999
- Online festive shopping's hidden duties
Thousands of people planning to enjoy their first "e-Christmas" will take delivery of an extra present this season - a bill from Customs and Excise. Increasing numbers of shoppers complain of unexpected extra charges when non-European Union goods ordered via the internet are delivered to their homes.
- WTO ministers fail to agree on Internet taxation
Ministers at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) meeting in Seattle failed to reach an agreement over the global implementation ofInternet taxation, following the collapse of all talks.
- USA - White House Opposes Tax Ban on Internet Sales
The Clinton Administration opposed proposals to ban the collection of sales taxes on Internet purchases and urged consideration of plans to simplify the nation's tangled collection of sales taxes.
Issue no. 135 - 5 December 1999
- USA - Advisory Commission on E-Commerce
The Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce (ACEC) was created by Congress to study federal, state, local and international taxation and tariffs on transactions using the Internet and Internet access.
Issue no. 133 - 18 November 1999
- Grasping The Nettle Of Internet Tax
It looks as though the Internet is going to play a big part in the coming US presidential campaign. Politicians in the US and across the world have been polishing up their internet credentials for quite some time and, hopefully, any moment now someone is going to try to grasp the nettle of Internet taxation.
- Read My Clicks: No Net Taxes
Everything that has to do with e-commerce seems to move at record speed, except for one thing: The decision whether to tax goods and services sold over the Internet.
Issue no. 129 - 16 October 1999
- U.S. seeking global ban on Internet taxes
Legislation introduced by Rep. Christopher Cox, R-Calif., and Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., urges U.S. trade officials to work during the World Trade Organization's November meeting in Seattle for a permanent global ban on taxes and tariffs that specifically target Internet commerce.
Issue no. 128 - 28 September 1999
- USA - Will you pay Internet tolls?
Utah and other states plan to charge access fees to companies laying cable for Internet and other telecommunications services along interstate highways.
Issue no. 127 - 20 September 1999
Issue no. 123 - 21 July 1999
Issue no. 121 - 25 June 1999
- USA - Net tax panel pinching pennies
The 19-member Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce set up to advise Congress on what should happen after the current e-commerce tax ban runs out has no budget, and raising funds is a problem.
Issue no. 110 - 3 March 1999
- USA - Counties Demand Net Taxes
A congressional advisory panel is unfairly biased against taxing Internet purchases and should be barred from meeting, local government officials claim in a lawsuit. The National Association of Counties will ask a federal judge to prevent the group from holding its first meeting, scheduled for later this month.
Issue no. 95 - 11 November 1998
Issue no. 94 - 7 November 1998
- UK - Customs reveal ecommerce tax plans
Customs authorities in the UK have revealed plans to tax businesses automatically every time they sell music or video over the Internet. HM Customs is liasing with European and US tax authorities to create a global standard for the software, which will most likely be based on the Open Trading Protocol, supported by BT, MasterCard, Netscape and hardware vendors including IBM.
Issue no. 91 - 16 October 1998
- USA - Internet Tax Freedom Act
Seen as a boon to e-commerce, the bill would create a national three-year moratorium on "discriminatory" taxes on Net access and services. Taxes passed before October 1, 1998, are exempt.
Issue no. 90 - 13 October 1998
- U.S. Senate Votes Historic Ban on Taxing Cyberspace
Senators voted 96-2 for the Internet Tax Freedom Act, which would bar states and towns from enacting new taxes aimed at Internet users for three years, until a commission studies the matter and issues recommendations. But software vendors were disappointed by a last-minute compromise that excluded "digitally delivered products" from the moratorium.
Issue no. 88 - 5 October 1998
- U.S. Senate Clears Path for Internet Tax Bill Vote
The U.S. Senate rejected 65-30 a proposal to allow states to require mail order catalogue houses and Internet companies to collect taxes on goods shipped to consumers within their borders. The vote eliminates a major hurdle to Senate adoption, expected next week, of landmark legislation barring new state and local taxes of the Web for two years.
Issue no. 69 - 26 May 1998
- WTO reaches no-tariff pact on Internet transmissions
The World Trade Organization (WTO) has approved an agreement to refrain, at least temporarily, from imposing tariffs on Internet transmissions, according to U.S. administration officials. Ministers from the 132-nation WTO, based in Geneva, agreed to continue the current practice of not imposing customs duties on electronic transmissions for a year, the officials said Thursday. However, goods ordered electronically but delivered physically are not covered by the agreement.
Issue no. 67 - 15 May 1998
- U.S. House Panel approves Internet tax bill
The U.S. House Commerce Committee on Thursday unanimously approved legislation to impose a three-year moratorium on new state and local taxes that discourage greater use of the Internet. The Internet Tax Freedom Act would bar the Federal Communications Commission and states from regulating the prices of Internet access and on-line services. It also calls for a three- year "time-out" on state and local taxation of the Internet and seeks a panel of experts to study long-term solutions on Internet taxation issues.
- U.S., Japan strike deal to keep Internet tax-free
(Nando.net - The AP)
The United States and Japan struck a deal Friday to keep the Internet tax-free as President Clinton toned down accusations that Japan wasn't doing enough to deal with the Asian financial crisis. The deal on the Internet commits the world's two largest economies to not impose restrictions on electronic commerce, encouraging self-regulation by Internet users themselves.
Issue no. 65 - 8 May 1998
- Germany - Steuern für das Internet - Bundesfinanzministerium spinnt OECD-Pläne alleine weiter
Der Handel im Internet boomt - nationale Grenzen spielen keine Rolle mehr. Angesichts der wachsenden Umsätze bangt jetzt der Fiskus um seine Einnahmen. Grund: Es gibt keine weltweit einheitlichen Steuergesetze für das Internet. Jetzt sollen Banken künftig automatisch die Mehrwertsteuern ihrer Kunden einbehalten. Vorausgesetzt die Bankkunden haben per Internet ausländische Ware bestellt und bezahlt.
Issue no. 64 - 2 May 1998
- Trade powers: No tariffs on Net
The United States, Canada, Japan, and the European Union pledged to seek agreement on a "standstill" to keep electronic commerce free of tariffs, but disagreed on their approach to future trade talks. Representatives of the four trading powers agreed to work together toward an agreement on global electronic commerce in time for a World Trade Organization meeting in Geneva on May 18. Officials from the four nations said they would "work to develop as soon as possible consensus on a standstill to preserve current practices of not imposing customs duties on electronic transmissions." This pledge fell short of the U.S. wish to get an accord within the next month to ensure commerce conducted entirely over the Internet will stay forever free of tariffs.
- USA - Forbes: No Net taxes for 5 years
A Washington compromise on Internet taxation has serious flaws, publisher and former GOP presidential candidate Steve Forbes told a New York e-commerce conference. Instead, Congress should enact the original version of the Cox-Widen bill, also called the Internet Tax Freedom Act, which calls for a five-year moratorium on taxing the Net, two years longer than the current proposal.
Issue no. 62 - 23 April 1998
- WTO - U.S. seeking international deal not to tax Internet
(Nando.net - Reuters)
The United States is pushing for a declaration at a World Trade Organization summit next month committing member countries not to tax Internet commerce, diplomats said Wednesday. The diplomats and other trade sources said Washington was signaling that President Clinton would only attend the gathering if agreement on such a declaration were reached among the 132 WTO states in advance.
Issue no. 56 - 24 March 1998
- USA - State, local leaders back Net tax bill
A measure to limit new taxes on the Internet cleared a major political hurdle when the nation's governors and local leaders endorsed a revised version. The National Governors' Association, along with groups representing cities and counties, put their weight behind a Revised measure would impose a three-year moratorium on new taxes instead of the earlier proposal of a six-year ban.
Issue no. 50 - 24 February 1998
- USA - Governors To Back Tax On Internet Sales
The nation's governors, Democratic and Republican, are about to adopt a policy supporting the imposition of a tax on goods and services bought through the Internet, Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating says. Keating, a Republican, told Reuters in an interview the governors would take a stand Tuesday at the end of the four-day National Governors Association meeting.
Issue no. 47 - 13 February 1998
Issue no. 44 - 6 February 1998
- WTO - U.S. wins networking tariff case
The World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled in the United States' favor in its case against the EuropeanUnion (EU), Ireland, and Britain over tariff hikes on computer equipment reclassified as communications technology,officials said today.
Issue no. 42 - 2 February 1998
Index page see also Electronic commerce
- USA - Mayors urged to fight Net tax bill
A key U.S. Senate Democrat warned the nation's mayors today that their towns will lose billions of dollars in revenue if they do not step up opposition to an Internet tax bill speeding through Congress.
Links to news items about legal and regulatory aspects of Internet and the information society, particularly those relating to information content, and market and technology.
QuickLinks consists of
QuickLinks is edited by Richard Swetenham firstname.lastname@example.org
- a free newsletter appearing approximately once a week. The newsletter is distributed by electronic mail through an "announcement only" mailing list. To be included on the mailing list, send a blank email to email@example.com (HTML) or firstname.lastname@example.org (Text)
- a Web site with frequent updates, an events page, news items organised by category as well as chronologically by issue and full text search.