Click on each country to read more information if applicable.

green-map-printed-book-colour Zero-rate or have no VAT. green-map-printed-book-colour Zero rate on e-books.

green-map-printed-book-colour Reduced VAT rate on e-books. green-map-printed-book-colour Standard rate of VAT to e-books.

Albania

Angola

Argentina

Austria

Australia

Belgium

Bulgaria

Brazil

Canada

Switzerland

Chile

Colombia

Cyprus

Czech Republic

Germany

Denmark

Ecuador

Estonia

Egypt

Spain

Finland

France

United Kingdom

Georgia

Ghana

Greece

Croatia

Hungary

Indonesia

Ireland

Israel

India

Iceland

Italy

Jordan

Japan

Kenya

South Korea

Lebanon

Sri Lanka

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Latvia

Morocco

Madagascar

Mongolia

Mexico

Malaysia

Mozambique

Nigeria

Netherlands

Norway

New Zealand

Peru

Philippines

Poland

Portugal

Qatar

Romania

Republic of Serbia

Russia

Saudi Arabia

Sweden

Slovenia

Slovakia

Thailand

Tunisia

Turkey

Taiwan

Tanzania

Ukraine

Uruguay

Venezuela

Vietnam

South Africa

Zambia

Northern Cyprus

Hong Kong

Malta

Singapore

E-Books and VAT/GST

In the EU-27, while 92.6% of the countries surveyed apply a special VAT treatment to printed books (in most cases a reduced VAT rate), only 7.4% apply a zero VAT rate (UK and Ireland).

In Latin America, while 50% of the countries surveyed apply a VAT/GST exemption to (a selection of) printed books, only 25% apply a 0% VAT/GST rate to printed books. And 12.5% apply a mix of a VAT/GST exemption and a zero VAT/GST rate.

In the case of a VAT/GST exemption, publishers, as final consumers, cannot claim a VAT refund on the supplies of goods or services needed to produce books. As a result VAT/ GST becomes a production cost, which automatically increases the price of books. A zero VAT/GST rate on books is therefore preferable to a VAT exemption. A zero rate provides the necessary support for the entire publishing chain, from author to publishers, bookshops and libraries. As the zero rating of books makes people more eager to buy books, it is one of the most effective ways of promoting book culture, literacy and reading. As a result, it is very likely to have a positive effect on cultural and educational policy, freedom of expression, and the creation of new independent publishing businesses. Ultimately, a zero VAT/GST rate means the creation of jobs and the development of a knowledge economy. This reasoning also applies to e-books, which should therefore be equally supported.

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