Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: Spain's Digital Services Tax, 6407-6408 [2021-01171]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 12 / Thursday, January 21, 2021 / Notices (202) 395–0380 and (202) 395–9531, respectively, Robert Tanner, Director, Services and Investment at (202) 395– 6125, or Michael Rogers, Director, Europe and the Middle East at (202) 395–2684. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. The United Kingdom’s DST Based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has prepared a comprehensive report on the United Kingdom’s DST (UK DST Report). The UK DST Report, which is posted on the USTR website at https://ustr.gov/issueareas/enforcement/section-301investigations/section-301-digitalservices-taxes, includes a full description of the United Kingdom’s DST. To summarize, the United Kingdom’s DST was introduced as part of the Finance Bill 2020 and adopted on July 22, 2020. The United Kingdom’s DST applies a two percent tax on the revenues of certain search engines, social medial platforms and online marketplaces. The United Kingdom’s DST applies only to companies with digital services revenues exceeding £500 million and United Kingdom digital services revenues exceeding £25 million. Companies became liable for the DST on April 1, 2020. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES II. Proceedings in the Investigation On June 2, 2020, the U.S. Trade Representative initiated an investigation of the United Kingdom’s DST pursuant to section 302(b)(1)(A) of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (Trade Act). 85 FR 34709 (June 5, 2020) (notice of initiation). The notice of initiation solicited written comments on, inter alia, the following aspects of the United Kingdom’s DST: discrimination against U.S. companies; retroactivity; and possibly unreasonable tax policy. With respect to tax policy, USTR solicited comments on, inter alia, whether the DST diverged from principles reflected in the U.S. and international tax systems including extraterritoriality; taxing revenue not income; and a purpose of penalizing particular technology companies for their commercial success. Interested persons filed over 380 written submissions in response to the notice of initiation. The public submissions are available on www.regulations.gov in docket number USTR–2020–0022. Under Section 303 of the Trade Act, the U.S. Trade Representative requested consultations with the Government of the United Kingdom regarding the issues involved in the investigation. Consultations were held on December 4, 2020. VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:44 Jan 19, 2021 Jkt 253001 As noted, based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has prepared and published the UK DST Report, which includes a comprehensive discussion on whether the acts, policies, and practices under investigation are actionable under Section 301(b) of the Trade Act. The UK DST Report supports findings that the United Kingdom’s DST is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce. III. Determination on the Act, Policy, or Practice Under Investigation Based on the information obtained during the investigation, and taking account of public comments and the advice of the Section 301 Committee and advisory committees, the U.S. Trade Representative has made the following determination under sections 301(b) and 304(a) of the Trade Act (19 U.S.C. 2411(b) and 2414(a)): the act, policy, or practice covered in the investigation, namely the United Kingdom’s DST, is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce, and thus is actionable under section 301(b) of the Trade Act. In particular: 1. The United Kingdom’s DST, by its structure and operation, discriminates against U.S. digital companies, including due to the selection of covered services and the revenue thresholds. 2. The United Kingdom’s DST is unreasonable because it is inconsistent with principles of international taxation, including due to application to revenue rather than income, extraterritoriality, and retroactivity. 3. The United Kingdom’s DST burdens or restricts U.S. commerce. IV. Further Proceedings Sections 301(b) and 304(a)(1)(B) of the Trade Act provides that if the U.S. Trade Representative determines that an act, policy, or practice of a foreign country is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts United States commerce, the U.S. Trade Representative shall determine what action, if any, to take under Section 301(b). These matters will be addressed in subsequent proceedings under Section 301. Joseph Barloon, General Counsel, Office of the United States Trade Representative. [FR Doc. 2021–01174 Filed 1–19–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3290–F0–P PO 00000 Frm 00119 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 6407 OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: Spain’s Digital Services Tax Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR). ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The U.S. Trade Representative has determined that Spain’s Digital Services Tax (DST) is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce and thus is actionable under Section 301. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For questions concerning the investigation, please contact Thomas Au or Patrick Childress, Assistant General Counsels at (202) 395–0380 and (202) 395–9531, respectively, Robert Tanner, Director, Services and Investment at (202) 395– 6125, or Michael Rogers, Director, Europe and the Middle East at (202) 395–2684. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: I. Spain’s DST Based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has prepared a comprehensive report on Spain’s DST (Spain DST Report). The Spain DST Report, which is posted on the USTR website at https://ustr.gov/issue-areas/ enforcement/section-301-investigations/ section-301-digital-services-taxes, includes a full description of Spain’s DST. To summarize, Spain introduced a legislative proposal to establish a DST on February 28, 2020 and adopted the DST on October 7, 2020. The DST applies a three percent tax on certain digital services revenues related to online advertising services, online intermediary services, and data transmission services. Companies with worldwide revenues of Ö750 million or more and Ö3 million in certain digital services revenues are subject to the tax. The tax is expected to take effect on January 15, 2021. II. Proceedings in the Investigation On June 2, 2020, the U.S. Trade Representative initiated an investigation of Spain’s DST pursuant to section 302(b)(1)(A) of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (Trade Act). See 85 FR 34709 (June 5, 2020) (notice of initiation). The notice of initiation solicited written comments on, inter alia, the following aspects of Spain’s DST: discrimination against U.S. companies, retroactivity, and possibly unreasonable tax policy. With respect to tax policy, USTR solicited comments on, inter alia, whether the DST diverged from E:\FR\FM\21JAN1.SGM 21JAN1 6408 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 12 / Thursday, January 21, 2021 / Notices principles reflected in the U.S. and international tax systems including extraterritoriality, taxing revenue not income, and a purpose of penalizing particular technology companies for their commercial success. Interested persons filed over 380 written submissions in response to the notice of initiation. The public submissions are available on www.regulations.gov in docket number USTR–2020–0022. Under Section 303 of the Trade Act, the U.S. Trade Representative requested consultations with the Government of Spain regarding the issues involved in the investigation. Consultations were held on December 17, 2020. As noted, based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has prepared and published the Spain DST Report, which includes a comprehensive discussion on whether the acts, policies, and practices under investigation are actionable under Section 301(b) of the Trade Act. The Spain DST Report supports findings that Spain’s DST is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES III. Determination on the Act, Policy, or Practice Under Investigation Based on the information obtained during the investigation, and taking account of public comments and the advice of the Section 301 Committee and advisory committees, the U.S. Trade Representative has made the following determination under sections 301(b) and 304(a) of the Trade Act (19 U.S.C. 2411(b) and 2414(a)): the act, policy, or practice covered in the investigation, namely Spain’s DST, is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce, and thus is actionable under section 301(b) of the Trade Act. In particular: 1. Spain’s DST, by its structure and operation, discriminates against U.S. digital companies, including due to the selection of covered services and the revenue thresholds. 2. Spain’s DST is unreasonable because it is inconsistent with principles of international taxation. 3. Spain’s DST burdens or restricts U.S. commerce. IV. Further Proceedings Sections 301(b) and 304(a)(1)(B) of the Trade Act provide that if the U.S. Trade Representative determines that an act, policy, or practice of a foreign country is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts United States commerce, the U.S. Trade Representative shall determine what action, if any, to take under Section VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:44 Jan 19, 2021 Jkt 253001 301(b). These matters will be addressed in subsequent proceedings under Section 301. Joseph Barloon, General Counsel, Office of the United States Trade Representative. [FR Doc. 2021–01171 Filed 1–19–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3290–F0–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration [Summary Notice No. 2016–XXXX] Petition for Exemption; Summary of Petition Received; Southern Seaplane, Inc. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: This notice contains a summary of a petition seeking relief from specified requirements of Federal Aviation Regulations. The purpose of this notice is to improve the public’s awareness of, and participation in, the FAA’s exemption process. Neither publication of this notice nor the inclusion or omission of information in the summary is intended to affect the legal status of the petition or its final disposition. SUMMARY: Comments on this petition must identify the petition docket number and must be received on or before February 10, 2021. ADDRESSES: Send comments identified by docket number FAA–2020–1043 using any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and follow the online instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Mail: Send comments to Docket Operations, M–30; U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Room W12–140, West Building Ground Floor, Washington, DC 20590–0001. • Hand Delivery or Courier: Take comments to Docket Operations in Room W12–140 of the West Building Ground Floor at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. • Fax: Fax comments to Docket Operations at 202–493–2251. Privacy: In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information the commenter provides, to DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00120 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 http://www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice (DOT/ALL–14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at http://www.dot.gov/ privacy. Docket: Background documents or comments received may be read at http://www.regulations.gov at any time. Follow the online instructions for accessing the docket or go to the Docket Operations in Room W12–140 of the West Building Ground Floor at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Brittany Newton, 202–267–6691, 800 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20591. This notice is published pursuant to 14 CFR 11.85. Issued in Washington, DC. Timothy R. Adams, Deputy Executive Director, Office of Rulemaking. Petition for Exemption Docket No.: FAA–2020–1043. Petitioner: Southern Seaplane, Inc. Section(s) of 14 CFR Affected: Part 141, appendix I, paragraph 4(j)(2)(iii) and (iv). Description of Relief Sought: Southern Seaplane, Inc., seeks relief from Appendix I, paragraph 4(j)(2)(iii) and (iv) of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations which requires one 2-hour cross country flight during daytime conditions and one 2-hour cross country flight during nighttime conditions. Southern Seaplane, Inc., wishes to omit these requirements because they are a prerequisite for enrollment into its course. [FR Doc. 2021–01223 Filed 1–19–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration [Docket No. FAA–2020–0616] Agency Information Collection Activities: Requests for Comments; Clearance of a Renewed Approval of Information Collection: Certification Procedures for Products and Parts Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice and request for comments. AGENCY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the FAA invites public comments about our SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\21JAN1.SGM 21JAN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 12 (Thursday, January 21, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 6407-6408]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-01171]


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OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE


Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: Spain's Digital 
Services Tax

AGENCY: Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR).

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The U.S. Trade Representative has determined that Spain's 
Digital Services Tax (DST) is unreasonable or discriminatory and 
burdens or restricts U.S. commerce and thus is actionable under Section 
301.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For questions concerning the 
investigation, please contact Thomas Au or Patrick Childress, Assistant 
General Counsels at (202) 395-0380 and (202) 395-9531, respectively, 
Robert Tanner, Director, Services and Investment at (202) 395-6125, or 
Michael Rogers, Director, Europe and the Middle East at (202) 395-2684.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Spain's DST

    Based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has 
prepared a comprehensive report on Spain's DST (Spain DST Report). The 
Spain DST Report, which is posted on the USTR website at https://ustr.gov/issue-areas/enforcement/section-301-investigations/section-301-digital-services-taxes, includes a full description of Spain's DST. 
To summarize, Spain introduced a legislative proposal to establish a 
DST on February 28, 2020 and adopted the DST on October 7, 2020. The 
DST applies a three percent tax on certain digital services revenues 
related to online advertising services, online intermediary services, 
and data transmission services. Companies with worldwide revenues of 
[euro]750 million or more and [euro]3 million in certain digital 
services revenues are subject to the tax. The tax is expected to take 
effect on January 15, 2021.

II. Proceedings in the Investigation

    On June 2, 2020, the U.S. Trade Representative initiated an 
investigation of Spain's DST pursuant to section 302(b)(1)(A) of the 
Trade Act of 1974, as amended (Trade Act). See 85 FR 34709 (June 5, 
2020) (notice of initiation). The notice of initiation solicited 
written comments on, inter alia, the following aspects of Spain's DST: 
discrimination against U.S. companies, retroactivity, and possibly 
unreasonable tax policy. With respect to tax policy, USTR solicited 
comments on, inter alia, whether the DST diverged from

[[Page 6408]]

principles reflected in the U.S. and international tax systems 
including extraterritoriality, taxing revenue not income, and a purpose 
of penalizing particular technology companies for their commercial 
success.
    Interested persons filed over 380 written submissions in response 
to the notice of initiation. The public submissions are available on 
www.regulations.gov in docket number USTR-2020-0022.
    Under Section 303 of the Trade Act, the U.S. Trade Representative 
requested consultations with the Government of Spain regarding the 
issues involved in the investigation. Consultations were held on 
December 17, 2020.
    As noted, based on information obtained during the investigation, 
USTR has prepared and published the Spain DST Report, which includes a 
comprehensive discussion on whether the acts, policies, and practices 
under investigation are actionable under Section 301(b) of the Trade 
Act. The Spain DST Report supports findings that Spain's DST is 
unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce.

III. Determination on the Act, Policy, or Practice Under Investigation

    Based on the information obtained during the investigation, and 
taking account of public comments and the advice of the Section 301 
Committee and advisory committees, the U.S. Trade Representative has 
made the following determination under sections 301(b) and 304(a) of 
the Trade Act (19 U.S.C. 2411(b) and 2414(a)): the act, policy, or 
practice covered in the investigation, namely Spain's DST, is 
unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce, 
and thus is actionable under section 301(b) of the Trade Act. In 
particular:
    1. Spain's DST, by its structure and operation, discriminates 
against U.S. digital companies, including due to the selection of 
covered services and the revenue thresholds.
    2. Spain's DST is unreasonable because it is inconsistent with 
principles of international taxation.
    3. Spain's DST burdens or restricts U.S. commerce.

IV. Further Proceedings

    Sections 301(b) and 304(a)(1)(B) of the Trade Act provide that if 
the U.S. Trade Representative determines that an act, policy, or 
practice of a foreign country is unreasonable or discriminatory and 
burdens or restricts United States commerce, the U.S. Trade 
Representative shall determine what action, if any, to take under 
Section 301(b). These matters will be addressed in subsequent 
proceedings under Section 301.

Joseph Barloon,
General Counsel, Office of the United States Trade Representative.
[FR Doc. 2021-01171 Filed 1-19-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3290-F0-P