Just in time for Black Friday, Amazon have swallowed their pride and decided to reopen sales to Australian consumers. Amazon had previously blocked buyers in Australia from buying internationally due to their reluctance to engage with Australian tax authorities over GST.
“As a result of changes to Australian GST law on 1 July, international shopping options for Australian customers will change. While we regret any inconvenience this may cause customers, we have had to assess the workability of the legislation as a global business with multiple international sites. Based on our assessment, we will redirect Australian customers from our international sites to amazon.com.au where they can shop for products sold by Amazon US on the new Global Store, available today. This will allow us to provide our customers with continued access to international selection and remain compliant with the law which requires us to collect and remit GST on products sold on Amazon sites that are shipped from overseas.”
– Amazon spokesperson in May 2018
Now, just 24 hours before Black Friday, Amazon have reversed their decision and decided to open up the rest of the world to Australia and enable Australian consumers to purchase from Amazon.com.
“As a result of customer feedback, from November 22 Amazon customers will be able to ship eligible items from amazon.com to Australian delivery addresses.”
– Amazon spokesman November 2018
eBay were impacted by the same GST rulings as Amazon but chose to collect GST for sales to Australian consumers making it easy for them to purchase worldwide. Amazon haven’t said how they’ll comply with GST requirements now that they’re reopening sales to Australia. If you’re an Amazon merchant and start seeing Australian sales we’d advise you to take professional accounting advice until Amazon release further advice.
What this does mean for merchants is, that if you want their business, you should add shipping to Australia to all your Amazon.com listings to make them attractive and visible to Aussie buyers.