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Subject: UKNM: RE: EU Internet VAT
From: John Braithwaite
Date: Fri, 17 Mar 2000 17:23:26 GMT

There are a lot of concerns - for example the RIP bill, but I hope that the
government will see sense and realise what a disaster this would be.

My main concern is a related rumour to charge VAT around the world according
to LOCAL rates. This is in order to get round every ecommerce company
hosting their servers on the Isle of Man (or Jersey, Monaco etc.) and paying
no tax.

However this would create a ludicrous situation where no customer is clear
what they are going to pay for any given product until the very end of the
shopping basket and it would require a very complex addition to every
ordering mechanism world-wide that is constantly flexible: Gordon Brown
announces a VAT increase and EVERY company with a website selling into the
UK has to change their 'table' accordingly. And how would we collect those

It reminds me of those numbskulls at Oftel: Making all Londoners change
their numbers again without realising that convergence is around the corner
and will result in the total amount of numbers decreasing in the foreseeable

How do these people manage to put on their clothes in the morning?

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