Silicon Valley internet giants Google, Apple and Facebook may be hit by a significant Russian tax bill as the country moves to enable ‘more equal working conditions’ to level the playing field for domestic IT companies.
German Klimenko told Russian radio that foreign internet companies need to be equal ‘before the law’ and pay VAT, which amounts to 18 per cent.
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an executive order to toughen up the rules for foreign internet companies last week.
And his advisor Klimenko has warned that social media websites would be blocked ‘sooner or later’ if they did not comply with legislation passed in August requiring companies storing Russian data to keep it on Russian soil.
I Word Understanding
Playing field- a set of conditions for competition
Comply- to act or be in accordance with wishes
II Have your say
- What are the pros and cons for governments on taxing these things?
- How important is the Internet to you?
- What things should never be taxed?
- Would your online usage change if there was an Internet tax?