Amazon blocks Australia from global sites over tax

May 31, 2018, 19:40
Amazon blocks Australia from global sites over tax

Unfortunately, consumers who've spent the last couple of decades relying on the U.S. version of Amazon to purchase products not readily-available in Australia may now have to start shopping elsewhere, likely at additional expense.

Until now, GST has applied only to most goods sold in Australia and imported goods worth over A$1,000, making relatively low-priced imported items cheaper than their equivalents in local stores.

Some internationals have made a decision to comply: Microsoft, for example, began levying GST on app store purchases in February this year.

The online giant offers up to 500 million products on it's primary site now, in contrast to the measly 60 million that the Australian site offers.

Called the "Amazon tax", the new policy was introduced following concerns about the impact of Amazon and other large overseas e-commerce businesses on Australian retailers, who have to apply GST to all products they sell.

'Amazon Global Store will allow Australian customers to shop on Amazon.com.au for over four million items that were previously only accessible on Amazon.com'.

The change to Amazon's website traffic, is being communicated to Amazon's worldwide customers with the company stating that from the 1st of July Aussie visitors to Amazon's global.com site will be redirected to the Australian.com.au site instead.

A web page featuring Amazon's Australian URL is pictured in this photo illustration April 20, 2017.

"This selection is in addition to the more than 60 million products that are already available on amazon.com.au across 23 categories, including books, fashion, toys, and electronics".

"The government doesn't apologise for ensuring multinationals pay a fair amount of tax here in Australia".

"While we regret any inconvenience this may cause customers, we have had to assess the workability of the legislation as a global business with multiple worldwide sites", an Amazon spokesman said in a statement today. "That tax revenue is used to fund essential services", the spokesperson said.

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