eBay lobbies Australia on proposed online import tax

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There’s a proposal on the table down under: the Australian government is considering a 10% import tax on online purchases. The GST measure was included in the 2015 Australian budget and legislation is expected to be sent to Parliament in early 2017.

As it stands GST isn’t applied to imports valued at under $1000AUD.

eBay has taken steps to lobby the Australian government and it’s reported that eBay CEO Devin Wenig has met with Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull to make the case against the new arrangements.

Wenig says: “We expressed some concerns about proposals in Australia that might inhibit innovation … I think we got a very constructive audience on those issues, so we are going to work together on those going forward. There is a rising nationalistic protectionism around the world, but our values are about free trade and we will fight that.”

There’s no doubt that such a measure would have a detrimental effect on international marketplace sellers selling into Australia and it is a useful English-speaking market for exports. Let us know if you hear anything more about these developments and how it might impact you should it be enacted.

7 Responses

  1. Well, if Australia introduces this so called import tax, then other countries will reciprocate and it will hit international sales globally.

    We’ll be back to 19th century tarriffs again.

    Neanderthal policies like this will harm trade everywhere.

    I would have thought Australia has to import an awful lot of its goods, so this has got to be bad news for Australian consumers as well.

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