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Internet and taxation in the European Union: A primer

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  • Luigi Bernardi

    (Università di Pavia)

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to offer a primer on certain important features and issues concerning Internet and taxation in the European Union. After a general introduction concerning the origins of the matter, the paper discusses why a tax on the huge profits made by the big US digital MNEs in Europe was not substantially reflected in the tax policy of EU members, notwithstanding the large tax gap among EU countries resulting from the shift in profits by the (US digital) MNE towards lower or no taxation countries. Then the main directives on Internet and taxation introduced by the EU (and also by the OECD) since the late 1990s are discussed: the EU especially focusses on establishing the due place of taxation on electronic commerce, while the OECD (more recently together with the G20) has placed the emphasis on regulating Transfer Prices and contrasting Base Erosion and Profits’ Shifting (BEPS).

Suggested Citation

  • Luigi Bernardi, 2015. "Internet and taxation in the European Union: A primer," Working papers 30, Società Italiana di Economia Pubblica.
  • Handle: RePEc:ipu:wpaper:30
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Luc Soete & Karin Kamp, 1996. "The ‘bit tax’: The case for further research," Science and Public Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(6), pages 353-360, December.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    web tax; e-commerce; profits shifting; Europe; OECD;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance

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