CCIA Calls For Strong U.S. Response as Result of Section 301 Investigations into Digital Tax

BY Heather Greenfield
January 14, 2021

Washington — The U.S. Trade Representative has released its reports in the Section 301 investigations into the digital services taxes (DSTs) of the United Kingdom, Spain, and Austria. USTR concluded that these taxes were discriminatory against U.S. tech firms, and are inconsistent with prevailing principles of international taxation, and burden U.S. commerce. This follows last week’s release of the Section 301 reports regarding the DSTs of Turkey, Italy, and India, where USTR likewise concluded that the national DSTs were unjustly targeted at U.S. firms.

Despite strong findings of discrimination, USTR has not recommended action at this time in response to these investigations. USTR has also suspended indefinitely tariffs announced in July 2020 in the Section 301 investigation into the French DST.

The Computer & Communications Industry Association has testified and offered comments in USTR’s Section 301 investigations and supports OECD-led global tax reform. 

The following can be attributed to CCIA President Matt Schruers:

“The need to resist discriminatory taxes targeting U.S. companies abroad is urgent, and should be prioritized by the incoming Biden Administration. Absent a proportionate response, U.S. exports will be unfairly singled out in other countries. Moreover, the proliferation of unilateral national taxes undermines the crucial work being done by the community of nations at the OECD, and risks the ability of negotiators to achieve consensus.”

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