South Centre

A Toss Up? Comparing Tax Revenues from the Amount A and Digital Service Tax Regimes for Developing Countries

In this paper, we attempt to estimate the tax revenues to be gained by the Member States of ATAF, WATAF, AU and the South Centre under the Amount A and an alternative stylized DST taxation regime. Our research demonstrates that the comparative revenue effects of the Amount A and DST taxation regimes largely depend on (a) the mix of relevant domestic economic activities at market jurisdictions (i.e., revenues sourced to the country as a market jurisdiction under Amount A and the level of revenues from automated digital services generated in the country), (b) design details of the DST regime such as the DST tax rate and the nature of activities to be taxed and (c) the relief from double taxation, if any, countries will grant to domestic and foreign taxpayers under DST. This paper contains analysis relying on sources of information available to private sector researchers and it does not involve review of any information that individual taxpayers provided to tax authorities.

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Unpacking the WTO MC13 Decision on the Work Programme on Electronic Commerce

Unpacking the WTO MC13 Decision on the Work Programme on Electronic Commerce

The 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) of the World Trade Organization (WTO) adopted a decision that marks a pivotal shift in the operational framework of the Work Programme on Electronic Commerce (WPEC) of the organisation. This Policy Brief examines how this Decision can enhance the trajectory of the e-commerce discourse within the WTO, elaborates on its implications and makes recommendations aimed at facilitating developing countries’ engagement in the WPEC.

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South Centre - The Global Digital Compact_ opportunities and challenges for developing countries in a fragmented digital space

The Global Digital Compact: opportunities and challenges for developing countries in a fragmented digital space

The adoption of a Global Digital Compact (GDC) as one of the outcomes of the Summit of the Future opens up the opportunity to address in a systematic manner issues that are of critical importance for the digital global governance. It also poses a challenge to developing countries, as most of them lack the infrastructure and capabilities to fully participate in the digital transformation. Many inequalities, including a deep digital divide, do exist and would need to be addressed by the GDC for it to become a real instrument of change and improvement in the living conditions and the prospects of a better future for most of the world population. This paper examines the current fragmentation in the digital governance and some of the issues raised by the proposals made by the UN Secretary-General for adoption of the GDC.

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South Centre U-turn by the U.S. Trade Representative to rein in the Big Tech Digital Trade Agenda

U-turn by the U.S. Trade Representative to rein in the Big Tech Digital Trade Agenda

Negotiations amongst a subset of Members on a Joint Statement Initiative (JSI) on Electronic Commerce have taken place along the side lines of the World Trade Organization (WTO) since 2019. They were launched in response to the refusal by a majority of developing countries at the Eleventh WTO Ministerial Conference to consent to a multilateral mandate proposed by a handful of WTO Members for negotiations on electronic commerce.

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