Chile planning new ecommerce tax for multinationals -finance minister
June 21 (Reuters) - Chile's government is planning to include a new tax on multinational digital commerce companies with local operations as part of a wider tax bill set to go to Congress this year, Finance Minister Felipe Larrain said on Thursday.
He did not give specifics but said that the measure may involve a tax on each transaction and would be aimed at international companies such as Amazon, Netflix, Spotify, and Uber.
"Obviously innovation and entrepreneurship are welcome. However, it is the government's duty to ensure that everyone can compete on a level playing field," he told reporters in th e capital Santiago.
E-commerce is gaining traction in Latin America after a slow start. Last month, an Amazon Web Services vice-president met Chilean president Sebastian Pinera to discuss Amazon investing in the country as part of a longer-term regional expansion plan.
Larrain acknowledged other countries had grappled with taxing e-commerce because the companies often lack a physical presence in-country.
"We are looking at other ways to apply tax, perhaps charge a transaction fee," he said. "Initial estimates suggest that collecting taxes from the digital economy and digital commerce could bring in several hundred million dollars."
The center-right government is hoping to send the tax bill to Congress in the next three months. Pinera has pledged to partially roll back corporate taxes hiked by his center-left predecessor, Michelle Bachelet.
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