i think it would be possible to charge gst on imported goods under $400, and heres how.
currently the ird only require businesses with turnover exceeding a certain amount to charge gst. the same rule could be applied to any overseas business selling to new zealanders. anyone who doesnt comply faces criminal action. in the case of websites, the government could just block those web addresses until they comply.
this rule would suit governments all around the world. each online business would need to comply with all the juristrictions where they want to do business. shopping carts can be geared up to support all the taxes once demand and regulation necesitates it. small or infrequent overseas businesses would have no compliance costs, only those which exceed $30000 revenue from nz sources.
companies like amazon, book depository, facebook and google may consider its not worth their hassle dealing with the ird, but then again, even little old nz spends a reasonable amount offshore. or local businesses could setup as reseller channels and deal with the tax and importation issue...
its not to hard to solve this issue, and nz retailers deserve a fair chance competing against offshore businesses..
Posted: Saturday 13 July 2013