Press Release - Newspaper publishers welcome support of EC Culture Commissioner Vassiliou for lower VAT on digital pressShare Print
Nicosia, Cyprus, 25th May 2012 - Newspaper publishers today warmly welcomed the personal statement of support of the European Commissioner for Education and Culture, Androulla Vassiliou, for lower VAT on digital press.
In a keynote speech
to the General Assembly of the European Newspaper Publishers' Association (ENPA) in Nicosia, Commissioner Vassiliou said: "My personal view is that reduced or zero VAT rates should continue to be applied to printed newspapers, and that digital press formats should be granted a similar treatment."
The Commissioner added: "I am convinced that extending the reduced or zero-VAT rates to online publications would be economically beneficial to the providers of on-line news. It would also ensure a level-playing field with other parts of the world such as the United States. But more importantly, it would make it easier to access on-line newspapers for all citizens, strengthening the role of newspapers as an indispensable tool in the education and empowerment of citizens."
ENPA has called for the VAT rates of digital newspapers to be aligned to the existing rates for printed press, as part of the EU's current review of the VAT system.
ENPA President Ivar Rusdal said: "It is encouraging to hear a senior European politician give her strong personal commitment to aligning the VAT rates on digital press to the existing reduced and zero rates for printed newspapers. Such a change would promote the competitiveness of a sector that is essential to jobs and growth in the European media sector."
ENPA also welcomed Commissioner Vassiliou’s statement underlining that digitisation of press content has increased the need for copyright protection: “I am firmly of the opinion that news aggregators and technology platforms need to respect newspaper copyright on the Internet,” she said.
Commissioner Vassiliou also commended the work of newspaper publishers to actively promote media literacy across Europe.
The European Newspaper Publishers' Association is an international non-profit organisation representing newspapers on all platforms. ENPA represents over 5,200 national, regional and local newspaper titles, published in 23 EU Member States, plus Norway, Switzerland and Serbia. More than 150 million printed newspapers are sold and read by over 300 million Europeans every day, in addition to the millions of readers of digital newspapers.
for the contact details of the ENPA staff member.