Japan’s current JCT regime was established in 1989 – before the rise of the digital economy. Accordingly, the taxation of B2C supply of eservices by non-established companies to Japanese customers was not considered and currently these are not subject to JCT.
This provides an unfair advantage to non-established eservice providers compared to Japanese businesses in this field, which has become more apparent since the JCT rate increased form 5% to 8%, with another increase to 10% estimated from 1 October 2015.
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The Malaysian tax authority has recently issued guidelines on the taxation of electronic commerce in Malaysia. The document provides guidance on the tax treatment of e-commerce transactions, including scope of the tax liability, treatment of servers and websites in determining the location of the ecommerce income, issues on withholding tax and double taxation and examples of the various business models with relevant explanations.
A new approach to the internet taxation
While Malaysia has not implement the VAT taxation (it applies sales tax) it has introduced a unique way to tax ebiz. This is effected by imposing a withholding tax (“WHT”) liability on the Malaysian recipients (both B2B and B2C) in relation to any royalty type payments made to non-Malaysian companies. Find out more
China’s sustained economic expansion over the past three decades has created an entire generation of new consumers. February 2013 issue of PwC’s r&c worlds Express update sheds light on Chinese consumers’ online shopping habits, based on the responses of 900 Chinese shoppers to a recent PwC survey. The Chinese consumers in our survey exhibit unique shopping patterns; for example, shopping far more often and using more on-the-go technology than survey respondents in the West.
The Chinese shoppers are adopting the Internet as a retail channel much faster than their global peers and running ahead of the pack in terms of using new devices and social media. Find out more
Ecommerce in Asia is booming. China alone is forecast to grow to an over US $350 billion industry by 2016. While some markets may already be considered mature (Australia, for example), the growth of internet connectivity and consumer purchasing power cannot be ignored by either small-to-medium enterprises or multi-national corporations looking to reach new consumers.
Ultimately, e-commerce is likely to continue growing because it can more easily provide a wide variety of products at lower prices and greater flexibility to customers, which in turn leads to an enhanced shopping experience.
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To provide clarity on the Goods and Services Tax (“GST”) treatment for e-commerce transactions, the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (“IRAS”) has issued a new e-tax guide: “GST: Guide for e-Commerce”.
The e-tax guide clarifies that the medium through which a transaction occurs does not alter the taxability of the transaction. In other words, a supply of goods or services made via the Internet or other electronic media is no different from that made via traditional methods. As such, a GST-registered business is required to charge and account for GST on such transactions, as applicable. The e-tax guide also provides guidance on the GST treatment for the supply of physical goods, digitised goods and services made via the Internet and other electronic media.
What does this mean for you?
If you do business in Singapore and also have a GST registration, you should be aware that GST should be applied to all goods that are ordered or delivered on-line.
This article has recently caught my eyes (it is from Bangkok Post):
Satit Rungkasiri, the director-general of the Revenue Department, said he was reluctant to impose harsh measures on the mostly young entrepreneurs who operate e-commerce sites. Authorities in fact want to encourage the growth of e-commerce as trade barriers fall with the launch of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015. Mr Satit said: Find out more