|Above, Japan will levy a consumption tax on foreign-based|
ebooks such as The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan.
The Japanese government has decided to levy a consumption tax on ebooks, digital music and other electronic media sold online from firms based in other countries.
According to News On Japan:
The government has decided to levy consumption tax on e-books, digital music and other electronic media sold online by overseas vendors from October, according to sources.
Currently, goods and services distributed in electronic formats by firms based abroad to consumers in Japan are not taxable. This has led to mounting criticism mainly from domestic booksellers, who call the system unfair.
Under the envisaged system, digital media sold by vendors whose headquarters are located outside Japan will be subject to taxation, the sources said. Such firms include Amazon.com Inc. in the United States and Kobo Inc., Rakuten Inc.'s affiliate in Canada.The ebook edition of The Monster Movie Fan's Guide To Japan would be subject to Japan's consumption tax beginning next October under this scheme. So, if someone from Japan should order the ebook (it is also available on Amazon Japan (images below)) they would also have to pay Japan's consumption tax.
As October nears, I predict that there will be a big rush in Japan to buy electronic media from overseas before the tax kicks in.
As former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said about government's insatiable appetite for more taxes (before he went wobbly in his second term):
"From the time they get up in the morning and flush the toilet, they're taxed. Then they go and get the cup of coffee, they're taxed....This goes on all day long. Tax, tax, tax."
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