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Taxing Global Digital Commerce

Taxing Global Digital Commerce

By Arthur Cockfield, Walter Hellerstein, Rebecca Millar, Christophe Waerzeggers


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E-commerce – the use of computer networks to facilitate transactions involving the production, distribution, sale, and delivery of goods and services in the marketplace – has grown from merely streamlining relations between consumer and business to a much more robust phenomenon embracing efficient business processes within a firm and between firms. Inevitably, the related taxation issues have grown as well.

This latest edition of the preeminent text on the taxation of electronic transactions – formerly titled Electronic Commerce and International Taxation (1999) and Electronic Commerce and Multijurisdictional Taxation (2001) – revises, updates, and expands the book’s coverage, reorganizes its presentation, and adds several new chapters. It includes a detailed and up-to-date analysis of VAT developments regarding e-commerce, and explores the implications of e-commerce for the US state and local sales and use tax regime. It discusses cross-border tax in the United States while continuing to focus on tax developments throughout the world.

Analysing the practical tax consequences of e-commerce from a multijurisdictional perspective, and using examples to illustrate the application of different taxes to e-commerce transactions, the book offers in-depth treatment of such topics as:

  • how tax rules governing cross-border e-commerce are increasingly applied to all cross-border activities;
  • how tax rules and institutional processes have evolved to confront challenges posed by e-commerce;
  • how technology enhances tax and cross-border tax information exchanges;
  • how technology reduces both compliance and enforcement costs;
  • cross-border consumption tax issues raised by cloud computing; and
  • different approaches to the legal design of VAT place of taxation rules.

This edition, while building on the analysis of the relationship between traditional tax laws and the Internet in earlier editions, contains a more explicit and systematic consideration of e-commerce issues and the ongoing policy responses to them. Tax professionals and academics everywhere will welcome the important contribution it makes towards the design of cross-border tax rules that are both conceptually sound and practical in application.

“[This book] is a tour de force… much  larger and richer than its predecessors… [and] a massive contribution to the growing literature on the  taxation of e-commerce.” 

Rita de la Feria,  vol. 91 British Tax Review p. 449 (2015)

"[This book] provides important understandings for ongoing policy discussions… I would warmly recommend.”  

P. Rendahl,  vol. 3(1) World Journal of VAT/GST Law p. 65 (2015)

Pages 552
Publish Date 09/23/2013
Publish Frequency Annually
Product Line Kluwer Law International
ISBN 9789041136527
SKU 10058597-0001
Table of Contents


Part I: Introduction and Overview.

Chapter 1. Introduction.

Chapter 2 . Technological Change and E-Commerce.

Chapter 3. Cross-Border Tax Framework.

Part II: Applying Current Tax Rules to E-Commerce.

Chapter 4. Applying Income Tax Rules to Cross-Border E-Commerce.

Chapter 5. The OECD and the Emerging Consumption Tax Discourse.

Chapter 6. Applying VAT Rules to Cross-Border E-Commerce.

Chapter 7. Applying the United States Retail Sales Tax to Cross-Border E-Commerce.

Part III: Evaluating Tax Law and Technology Change.

Chapter 8. Exploring Policy Options.

Chapter 9. Challenging Traditional Tax Laws and Policies.

Chapter 10. The Road Ahead: Supporting Cross-Border Tax Information Exchange.