Poland is getting fed up with the VAT between print books and e-books and are doing something about it. A number of Polish judges have asked European Court of Justice to look into the matter.
Currently print books in Poland have a 5% VAT but e-books carry a hefty surcharge of 23%. The main reason for this is because the EU classifies e-books are a “service” and not a “product.”
Not only are the judges now involved, but the Minister of Culture Małgorzata Omilanowska called on the European Commission to immediately start working on a directive that would make electronic and traditional books legally equal.
The high cost of VAT on e-books is stagnating the entire digital publishing industry in Poland. Schools, libraries and corporate bodies are still going with print, because the digital editions are not budget friendly.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.