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Magazines Ireland welcomes European Council agreement that allows Member States to apply reduced VAT rates to digital press

Magazines Ireland

Press Release

2 October 2018

Magazine publishers applaud the outcome of today’s Economic and Financial Affairs Council (Ecofin), which saw the adoption of the proposal to amend the existing EU VAT directive to allow Member States to align their digital VAT rates to their print rates.

Magazines Ireland, CEO, Grace Aungier said “the decision to allow lower rates to be applied to electronically supplied publications removes a major obstacle to the further development of the digital press market. It will encourage publishers to continue the high investment in quality content whilst being able to invest in digital technologies”.

The current VAT Directive (2006/112) regime only allows for reduced-rates to be applied to printed versions of magazines and newspapers at EU level. Magazines Ireland, with its colleagues in the European Magazine Media Association (EMMA), have long stressed the need to align the VAT rates for digital publications with the reduced, super reduced and zero rates that are applied to printed publications.

Aungier continued, “Magazines Ireland has always believed that the application of VAT should be platform neutral and rates applied to printed magazines should apply equally to digital editions”.

Chairman, Magazines Ireland, Ciaran Casey said, “The outcome of this vote is an essential step towards guaranteeing media pluralism and establishing a basis for freedom of opinion and democracy in the digital world. It underlines press freedom as one of the fundamental values of our European democratic societies and will have a critical impact on our sector’s sustainability”.


Contact: Grace Aungier, CEO, Magazines Ireland