The price of ordering items from Amazon could be set to rise on the back of a “tech tax”.
The online retail giant Amazon is set to increase fees from September, by about two per cent, as a result of a new tax in force in the UK.
The digital services tax was actually introduced in Spring, but Amazon said it had thus far been absorbing the cost.
However, from September 1, it will officially take effect.
Amazon has cashed in across the lockdown period, with so many people unable to access shops.
The retail giant said it would be increasing referral fees, storage fees and fulfillment fees by 2% in the UK to reflect this additional cost.
The move is set to hit those sellers who sign up to “Fulfillment by Amazon”, and send their goods to Amazon to store, ship and handle returns, the hardest.
Payments under that tax are not due until next year.
Amazon told Mirror Money it has spent the past eight months challenging the tax over concerns it would impact consumers more than profits. However, it has now been legislated.
An Amazon spokesman told Mirror Money: “Like many others, we have encouraged the Government to pursue a global agreement on the taxation of the digital economy at OECD level rather than unilateral taxes, so that rules would be consistent across countries and clearer and fairer for businesses.
“As we’ve previously indicated, the way that the Government has designed the Digital Services Tax will directly impact the businesses that use our services.”
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In March, the UK government confirmed plans to introduce a digital services tax to collect 2% of online revenues made in the UK by companies such as Facebook, Google and Amazon.
Although it was not mentioned during the most recent mini-Budget, the government has confirmed the tax will be introduced on 1 April 2020.
HMRC believes the tax could result in as much as £515million in additional annual income by the end of the financial year ending in 2025.
The department explained the tax will likely to affect “large multi-national enterprises with revenue derived from the provision of a social media service, a search engine or an online marketplace to UK users”.
Companies such as Apple, which are expanding into the digital services sector, including entertainment streaming and a credit card, may also be impacted.
A similar tax already exists in France, charging all firms with global turnovers above £655million a 3% levy.