Not all books are created equal, particularly when it comes to VAT

[05 Mar 2015] Following on from last November's news item about VAT on e-books, in which the idea that e-books should be treated as books (and not as a service) and thus open to the reduced tax applied to books in some countries was reported, a top European court has backed EU regulators that only paper books qualify for reduced tax. Euronews reported today that officials have confirmed that member states can set lower rates of value-added tax on printed books but that the ruling cannot apply to e-books as they qualify as an “electronically provided service.” Unsurprisingly, publishers and booksellers are not happy - they make the point that this ruling will put people off e-reading.