You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Money Top Stories

Apple, Uber and Airbnb in firing line of tech tax

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 03/11/2018 James Titcomb
Philip Hammond in a suit standing in front of a fence: The Treasury last week said it was planning to role out a digital services tax in 2020 © Shuzo Shikano/Getty Images The Treasury last week said it was planning to role out a digital services tax in 2020

Apple, Uber and Airbnb face being snared by Philip Hammond’s tech tax crackdown.

The Treasury last week unveiled a “digital services tax” that will impose a levy on Silicon Valley giants’ revenues.

Download the all-new Microsoft News app to receive up-to-the minute news from the world’s best sources – available now on iOS and Android


The 2pc tax is being imposed on advertising revenues from search engines and social networks, as well as commissions from “online marketplaces” – apps and websites that connect sellers and buyers.

Video: Apple shows off thinner, more powerful iPad, MacBook Air (USA TODAY)

UP NEXT
UP NEXT

Amazon and eBay appear the most likely victims of the marketplace tax, but the policy will also apply to online services as well as to goods, sources familiar with the matter said.

The Treasury declined to speculate on the companies that could fall under the tax. However, a Treasury paper, published in March, listed App Stores and the sharing economy as likely to be affected by a marketplace tax, and The Sunday Telegraph understands the Government is still looking at these areas.

The Apple logo outside the Apple shop on Regents Street, central London. © Getty The Apple logo outside the Apple shop on Regents Street, central London.

Uber and Airbnb, as “sharing economy” companies, do not sell their own services, but act as a go-between for consumers, drivers or accommodation providers.

Although sales of Apple’s iPhones and other devices would not be affected by the tax, its App Store connects developers and consumers, taking a commission of up to 30pc on sales.

The Treasury said the provision of online content and sales of television services would not be included under the tax, ruling out companies such as Netflix which essentially own the content they stream, and, if Apple takes ownership of the apps it sells, it could possibly avoid the tax.

Gallery: Uber's flying taxis could come down under (StarsInsider)

The tax would only apply to profitable companies that make global revenues of more than £500m from the advertising or "intermediary" activities, meaning that, if applied today, both Airbnb and Apple would qualify. Uber is not yet profitable, but has aspirations to be soon.

Apple does not reveal how much it makes from the App Store in the UK but its global revenues were estimated to be over $10bn last year. Neither Airbnb nor Uber have revealed what their UK revenues are.

Gallery: From caves to castles, cool Airbnb listings that won’t break the bank (USA TODAY)

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from The Telegraph

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon