Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: The United Kingdom's Digital Services Tax, 6406-6407 [2021-01174]

Download as PDF 6406 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 12 / Thursday, January 21, 2021 / Notices of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and other agencies and officials as appropriate, is authorized to impose on a person any of the sanctions described in section 2(c) of E.O. 13894 upon determining that the person met any criteria set forth in section 2(a)(i) or section 2(a)(ii) of E.O. 13894. The Secretary of State has determined, pursuant to Section 2(a)(i)(A) of E.O. 13894, that Saqr Rustom and the National Defense Forces are responsible for or complicit in, have directly or indirectly engaged in, attempted to engage in, or financed, the obstruction, disruption, or prevention of a ceasefire in northern Syria. Pursuant to Sections 2(b) and 2(c) of E.O. 13894, the Secretary of State has selected the following sanctions to be imposed upon Saqr Rustom and the National Defense Forces: • Block all property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of any United States person of Saqr Rustom and the National Defense Forces, and provide that such property and interests in property may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in (Section 2(c)(iv) of E.O. 13894). Peter D. Haas, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, Department of State. [FR Doc. 2021–00951 Filed 1–19–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4710–AE–P OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: Austria’s Digital Services Tax Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR). ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The U.S. Trade Representative has determined that Austria’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. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:44 Jan 19, 2021 Jkt 253001 III. Determination on the Act, Policy, or Practice Under Investigation SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Austria’s DST Based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has prepared a comprehensive report on Austria’s DST (Austria DST Report). The Austria 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 Austria’s DST. To summarize, Austria’s DST imposes a 5% tax on gross revenues from digital advertising services provided in Austria. The DST applies only to companies with annual global revenues of Ö750 million or more, and annual revenues from digital advertising services in Austria of Ö25 million or more. II. Proceedings in the Investigation On June 2, 2020, the U.S. Trade Representative initiated an investigation of Austria’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 Austria’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 Austria regarding the issues involved in the investigation. Consultations were held on December 21, 2020. As noted, based on information obtained during the investigation, USTR has prepared and published the Austria 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 Austria DST Report supports findings that Austria’s DST is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce. PO 00000 Frm 00118 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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 Austria’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. Austria’s DST, by its structure and operation, discriminates against U.S. digital companies. 2. Austria’s DST is unreasonable because it is inconsistent with principles of international taxation. 3. Austria’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. 2021–01173 Filed 1–19–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3290–F0–P OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: The United Kingdom’s Digital Services Tax Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR). ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The U.S. Trade Representative has determined that the United Kingdom’s Digital Services Tax (DST) is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts U.S. commerce and thus is actionable under Section 301. SUMMARY: For questions concerning the investigation, please contact Thomas Au or Patrick Childress, Assistant General Counsels at FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: E:\FR\FM\21JAN1.SGM 21JAN1 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

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 12 (Thursday, January 21, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 6406-6407]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-01174]


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OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE


Notice of Determination Pursuant to Section 301: The United 
Kingdom's Digital Services Tax

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

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: The U.S. Trade Representative has determined that the United 
Kingdom'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

[[Page 6407]]

(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/issue-areas/enforcement/section-301-investigations/section-301-digital-services-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 [pound]500 million and United 
Kingdom digital services revenues exceeding [pound]25 million. 
Companies became liable for the DST on April 1, 2020.

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.
    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