At issue are new rules to "face the challenges posed by the economy of digital platforms", adopted on 22 March by the Council of the EU and which will come into force as of 1 January 2023, covering digital platforms located both inside and outside the EU (like Facebook or Instagram).
Through a revision of the European directive on administrative cooperation in the field of taxation, as of that date, “an obligation exists for operators of digital platforms to communicate the income obtained by sellers on their platforms and for Member States to exchange this information automatically”, explains the directive.
In particular, according to the Council, the new rules "will allow national tax authorities to detect the income obtained through digital platforms and determine the relevant tax obligations".
“Compliance will also become easier for operators of digital platforms, since notification will only take place in one Member State, according to a common EU framework”, he adds.
Cited by the statement, the Portuguese Minister of Finance, João Leão, notes that this is "an important update of EU rules, which will help to ensure that active sellers on digital platforms also pay their share of taxes".
"It is particularly welcome at a time when more and more sales are made over the internet and when the Covid-19 pandemic is putting pressure on public finances", said the official representing the Portuguese EU presidency.
João Leão also believes that, “the EU is setting an example to the world by extending its rules for automatic information exchange to the economy of digital platforms”.
This review aims, therefore, that the European taxation rules should be extended to businesses promoted through, for example, social media such as Facebook or Instagram, which have been growing, namely due to the pandemic and the restrictive measures adopted to physical sales.
However, despite this growing number of people and companies using digital platforms to sell goods or provide services, such income is not normally reported and taxes are not paid.
This situation leads the Member States to end up losing tax revenues and creates inequalities compared to traditional commercials and stores.