Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


Govt expects '75% compliance' on foreign GST it can't police

Watch - The government has officially announced that foreign companies will be asked to pay GST on goods sold online to New Zealanders from October next year.

Small Business and Revenue Minister Stuart Nash and Customs Minister Meka Whaitiri spoke at Unity Books in Wellington.

Watch the announcement:

GST was applied to digital services from offshore such as Netflix in 2016.

Mr Nash said the move announced today, which would take force on 1 October 2019, would extend it to goods sold online from offshore as well.

However, the tax will essentially be voluntary, with Small Business minister Stuart Nash saying there was no way for the government to effectively police it.

He said the government was expecting "about 75 percent compliance".

Ms Whaitiri said the move would change how GST was collected, so that instead of applying at the border it would apply at the moment of sale.

"And in turn, buyers of these goods will no longer pay Customs tariffs or border security and biosecurity fees. This will simplify compliance and administration costs at the border," she said.

The system would not change for goods over $400, however.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern signalled the move on Morning Report today, saying the government would be announcing "fairer" GST rules.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson in November had to rein in expectations the tax change would be imposed early on, after Mr Nash initially said the government would be making the move.

It comes ahead of the Labour government's first Budget to be announced on 17 May.

Australia had also been planning to collect tax on low-value online goods from last July, but delayed implementation to July this year as it struggled to work out the practicalities. Switzerland is set to introduce one on 1 January next year, and the EU is looking at a similar system.

In the UK and Canada, the equivalent of New Zealand's $400 limit is much lower.

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


The Conversation: Rogue Poll Or Not, All The Signs Point To A Tectonic Shift In New Zealand Politics

Richard Shaw AAP(various)/NZ Greens (CC-BY-SA)/The Conversation Strong team. More jobs. Better economy. So say the National Party’s campaign hoardings. Only thing is, last Sunday’s Newshub-Reid Research poll – which had support for the Labour ... More>>

Dunne Speaks: It's Time For Matariki Day

The period of Matariki, the celebration of the Māori New Year, which began earlier this week, is being celebrated increasingly as an important national event. While many other countries have their own form of New Year celebrations, Matariki is uniquely ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Why We Shouldn’t Be Pushed Into Re-Opening Our Borders

I believe in yesterday as much as Paul McCartney, but it was bemusing to see the amount of media attention lavished last week on the pandemic-related musings by former government science adviser Sir Peter Gluckman, former Prime Minister Helen Clark ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Media Collusion With National’s Attack Lines

For most of the past week, any consumer of this country’s management of Covid-19 would think New Zealand was actually Brazil, or Texas. The media language has been full of claims of “botches” at the border, and laxness and inexcusable errors ... More>>

The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Welcome Deaths: Coronavirus And The Open Plan Office

For anybody familiar with that gruesome manifestation of the modern work place, namely the open plan office, the advent of coronavirus might be something of a relief. The prospects for infection in such spaces is simply too great. You are at risk from ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Why Thinking Makes It So: Donald Trump’s Obamagate Fixation

The “gate” suffix has been wearing thin since the break-in scandal that gave it its birth. Since Watergate, virtually anything dubious and suggestive, and much more besides, is suffixed. Which brings us to the issue of President Donald Trump’s ... More>>