back to article India backs away from digital services tax after US pressure

India has agreed to wind back the two per cent Equalisation Levy it charges foreign e-commerce companies, and the USA has withdrawn sanctions it imposed to protest the levy. The levy was introduced in 2016 as a means of ensuring India could collect more tax. The nation's government introduced it because big e-commerce players …

  1. YetAnotherLocksmith

    About time. The USA is very touchy about this, considering they don't see the tax either!

    15%. Better than nothing, I guess...

    1. RobLang

      15% does sound low but it's easier to introduce it low and raise it later than it is to start high.

    2. Alex Stuart

      It is, but even 15% - I'll believe it when I see it.

      Governments are good at talking, not so good at doing.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Alex Stuart - Governments are nothing

        but puppets of big corporations. Why does the US government bother with this since they don't see a dime in tax from tech giants ? It's not like India is depriving US of tax revenue.

  2. msobkow Silver badge

    It's only "fair" if Americans profit. Don't you get that yet?

    Every major country in the world runs on that premise. It is only "fair" if it is to "my" benefit.

    People tend to think the same way.

    True honesty and integrity are, unfortunately, not common any more. If there ever truly was an age of chivalry instead of navety, it wasn't during my life time.

    The difference is some countries are outright bullies about wanting and taking...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @msobkow - Exactly!

      Honesty and integrity will turn you into a loser.

  3. BrownishMonstr

    Sanctions, you say? It would be sad if we were to block your companies from trading in our country.

  4. Raj

    Title makes no sense

    The article contradicts the title . E-tailers resort to an elaborate tax dodge. India responds with a special levy to compensate for it. The US /sanctions/ India for acting against a tax dodge. A G20 deal agrees on a common minimum tax rate. The US removes its sanction but India keeps the levy in exchange for a future promise. Sure, because taxes are always temporary ?

    Why on earth is the US going after countries that are doing the right thing here ? Perhaps because Joe Biden was a longtime senator from Delaware - a state that basically exists to serve creative corporate tax dodges ?

    1. msobkow Silver badge

      Re: Title makes no sense

      I always find it amusing when people think the President is the beginning and end of power in the US. They aren't, despite the wishes and fantasies of one D. Drumpf about being a dictator. Even he was leashed by Congress, the Senate, and by the courts. Never mind the morass of the bureaucracy that moves so slowly.

      'Tis the same here in Canada. People blame Trudeau for decisions made by other branches of government because he is the figurehead, the lightning rod for the blame and angst of society.

      1. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge

        Re: Title makes no sense

        Agreed. Most people even in the US don't understand squat about our goverment structures or our Consitution, because most civics curriculum was dropped from High Schools 30-40 years ago. For the same reason few Americans understand what Rule of Law is. Yet they all think they understand these things because some equally ignorant loud mouth on TV or radio thinks they do too.

      2. Raj

        Re: Title makes no sense

        The rest of the world isn’t obligated to understand every aspect of American politics . The US has a presidential system . The President is the face of government . The details of the system are a problem for Americans alone. Others owe Americans any such consideration only if the the reverse is true, which it isn’t.

        Biden has an entire career - about 4 decades ? - of being senator from a state essentially known for being a corporate tax dodge. He backs sanctions - him and not his predecessor- on countries preventing big MNCs from doing tax dodges because… ?

        US foreign trade policy is messed up enough that it simultaneously arranges an international minimum corporate tax regime and simultaneously applies sanctions on countries trying to ensure corporations don’t dodge local tax regimes.

        The article is misleading because nothing has changed - India continues to impose the levy AND got a minimum tax regime it is happily part of, while the US has yet another mark against itself - sanctioning countries for doing the right thing… again.

        The only thing that matters to outsiders is that the US and its President are wrong. The details of why and who’s to blame are just for American consumption.

  5. T. F. M. Reader Silver badge

    Delaware as an acronym

    Allegedly Delaware gets so much revenue from various fees corporations pay it does not need to tax out-of-state fees. There are also non-tax-related benefits of incorporating there. With all that, I don't suppose the state is dubbed “Dollars and Euros Laundered And Washed At Reasonable Expense” for nothing.

    To be fair, the UK is not without blemish, either...

    1. Potemkine! Silver badge

      Re: Delaware as an acronym

      Very interesting articles.

      I don't understand why people don't revolt much whey they have to pay more and more taxes when so many companies do whatever possible to pay less and less, with the help of (corrupt) politicians.

      In the past, many revolutions started because of tax pressures, why doesn't it happen anymore when the whole system is so unfair in most countries if not all?

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