USTR Announces, and Immediately Suspends, Tariffs in Section 301 Digital Services Taxes Investigations
June 4, 2021
“The United States is focused on finding a multilateral solution to a range of key issues related to international taxation, including our concerns with digital services taxes. The United States remains committed to reaching a consensus on international tax issues through the OECD and G20 processes. Today’s actions provide time for those negotiations to continue to make progress while maintaining the option of imposing tariffs under Section 301 if warranted in the future.”
– United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai
On June 2, 2020, USTR initiated investigations into DSTs adopted or under consideration in ten jurisdictions: Austria, Brazil, the Czech Republic, the European Union, India, Indonesia, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.
In January 2021, following comprehensive investigations USTR determined that the DSTs adopted by Austria, India, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and the United Kingdom discriminated against U.S. digital companies, were inconsistent with principles of international taxation, and burdened U.S. companies.
In March 2021, USTR announced proposed trade actions in these six investigations, and undertook a public notice and comment process, during which it collected hundreds of public comments and held seven public hearings. USTR also terminated the remaining four investigations (of Brazil, the Czech Republic, the European Union, and Indonesia) because those jurisdictions had not implemented the DSTs under consideration.