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eBay Launches VAT Grassroots Campaign in Europe

eBay through its eBay Main Street Government Relations Team has launched a pan-European petition to give sellers a voice in the discussion on change in the EU VAT (Value Added Tax) system.

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EU leaders are discussing changing the existing EU VAT system to could have a significant impact on the small businesses and consumers in Europe.

  • New taxes on cross-border sales: European small businesses who currently do not have to charge VAT in their home country would be forced to charge it for sales to other EU countries even if they are selling as little as €10,000 across all of Europe. These proposals would disproportionately hit the smallest micro enterprises and artisans, many of them in the most remote parts of Europe, who depend on online marketplaces like eBay to reach new markets to grow their business.
  • Higher prices for consumers: In addition to these new sales taxes on EU sales, low value imports from outside the EU would now be subject to VAT. This will hurt European consumers at a time when their household budgets are already being squeezed.
  • Less cross-border trade within Europe and less choice for consumers: Far from expanding the Digital Single Market, many small businesses may simply choose to export less, undermining Internet-enabled economic growth.
  • More red tape for European small businesses: Small businesses with pan-European sales of as little as €10,000 will face new VAT rules, many for the first time. VAT is already confusing enough for small businesses. Let’s not make it harder.

The eBay Government Relations team and members of the eBay Small Business Ambassador Network will formally present the petition to European leaders.


You can sign the petition digitally here.

The full text of the petition is as follows:

We, the undersigned, demand that the EU think again on its VAT reforms and take the following actions to protect European small businesses and consumers:
Stop new taxes on EU sales and support European small businesses – by supporting higher and harmonised distance sales VAT thresholds.
Keep prices lower – by maintaining the current rules for low value imports from outside the EU.
Cut red tape – by introducing an EU-wide database which small businesses can use to easily work out the correct VAT rate for individual products in each country.

If you are in the EU, this is your chance to have your voice heard with the help of eBay. We also like to hear your thoughts on VAT in Europe. Please use the comments section below.

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