eBay lobbies Australia on proposed online import tax

By Dan Wilson December 5, 2016 - 10:50 pm

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.

  • Andy R
    8 months ago

    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.

    8 months ago

    dont know why ebays carping, they have a similar ethos with their 10% tax on postage

    • James
      8 months ago

      They did this because people would charge 99p for the item and £12 shipping back in the day, to avoid commission.

    • TINKER
      8 months ago

      so why not cap all postage ? and why charge 10% on capped postage ?

    • Steven
      8 months ago

      Just greedy eBay. First they forced business sellers to offer free postage for TRS status (a stealth postage tax). Then, when they realised some sellers had decided to do without TRS, they introduced the 10% tax on postage.

      Buyers don’t need delivery costs to be included. They are perfectly capable of working out the total purchase cost. Now buyers usually end up paying more when making multiple purchases from the same seller.

    • TINKER
      8 months ago

      too right
      free postage x 2 == 1 postage cost extra for the seller lol

    • Derek Duval
      7 months ago

      Yeah right nothing to do with increasing there profit. If they wanted to implement this they could have just caped postage costs

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