According to Andrey Belyaninov, head of Federal Customs Services suggested a law that imposes an up to 10% federal tax on all goods imported from foreign online shops. The law is being being developed by FCS now. One of the possible ways to collect the tax is by merchants on checkout.
Globalsib.ru claims that according to post services data, in 2011 Russian got 24 mln. parcels, while in 2012 the number went up to 30 mln. 80% of all parcels we from a foreign online retailers.
In case the tax will be introduced internationals retailers will still remain more competitive compared to local Russian. One thing left unclear. Government mentions only tangible goods, which means air plane tickets, hotel bookings etc. will not be a subject to tax. This year Russia joined WTO so this bright idea of Mr. Belyaninov might be against organization’s rules. It will be hard to prove that tax is introduced to protect local producers, because all goods obviously are manufactured out of Russia. I really hope that this new law is an echo of an old mindset and is just another example how media amplifies news.