Government proposes taxes for tech giants, multinationals - Kogonuso

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Jun 4, 2019

Government proposes taxes for tech giants, multinationals

The government has released details of how it intends to tax large online multinational companies like Facebook, Google, Uber and Airbnb.

The Digital Services Tax discussion has now been made public and is now open to consultation.

It would include companies such as Facebook, Uber, YouTube and Airbnb.

Options to be considered include a flat digital service tax, which would also apply to some New Zealand companies.

The OECD is already considering two solutions, which will also be part of the government's consultation plan.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said stopping using multi-national companies like Facebook isn't going to solve the issue of them not paying their fair share of tax.

An international response to multinationals not paying a fair amount of tax was the preference, but in the meantime, New Zealand was doing its own work, Ms Ardern said.

While the government paid a large bill for using social media sites, Ms Ardern said stopping using their platforms wasn't going to change the overall problem.

"Either we can cease to use a form of advertising that, actually, a large number of New Zealanders would see when it comes to communicating information that is relevant to them, or we can actually make sure that these multinationals pay their fair share of tax."

Finance Minister Grant Robertson said the number one preference would be to have an internationally agreed solution through the OECD.

However, if sufficient progress couldn't be made this year, an interim solution was needed, he said.

A third option would be a minimum tax which would be adopted in addition to one of the three other proposals.
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