Tax should be the same – no matter how you shop

18 August 2015

InternetNZ has responded to news out yesterday that the Government will release a discussion document on how GST should be applied to offshore purchases of goods and services.

"As a matter of principle, InternetNZ believes that laws should generally be applied without distinction between online and offline behaviour," says InternetNZ Chief Executive Jordan Carter.

"It doesn't make sense to give online services a tax advantage. People subscribing to an overseas service should pay the same tax they would if they subscribe to one based in New Zealand.

"The question of goods bought overseas is a little more complicated. As long as the Government's proposals don't create a bureaucratic nightmare at the border, the principle should be the same.

"People buy services and goods offshore because of the vast array of choices they have and the prices they can get. Neither factor will be harmed by equal taxation – no matter where things come from.

"We look forward to looking at the detail presented in the discussion document, and will make a submission to it," Jordan Carter says.

The discussion document is expected to be released today.

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