VAT on e-books to be abolished
12 March 2020
The government announced in the 2020 Budget that it will
introduce legislation to apply a zero rate of VAT to e-publications
from 1 December 2020, which will make it clear that e-books,
e-newspapers, e-magazines and academic e-journals are entitled to
the same VAT treatment as their physical counterparts.
The government also said that it expects the publishing
industry, including e-booksellers, to pass on the benefit of this
relief to consumers. It should benefit all who read digitally,
including children from poorer backgrounds: nearly 1 in 4 pupils on
free school meals read fiction digitally, compared to 1 in 6 of
their peers who are not eligible for free school meals.
See the UK Government Budget Statement of 11 March
2020, paragraph 1.52.
See also the articles of 11 March 2020 in The Bookseller and on the BBC website.