Armstrong Economics Blog/Australia & Oceania
Re-Posted Aug 10, 2018 by Martin Armstrong
People who think that Trump alone embarked on protectionism, really need to look around the World. Australians have been blocked by Amazon from buying anything from their US site because the government has imposed effectively a tariff of 10% on anything an Australian may purchase under $1,000 from the internet overseas. The Australian government is violating international law demanding that anyone selling anything on the internet must collect a 10% tax from an Australian and pay it to the Australian government.
The Australian government has shifted a tax-collecting burden to the entire world. Amazon has now blocked Australians from buying from their sites outside of Australia. They correctly criticized Australia stating that delivery companies such as Australia Post should be made to collect the tax, not the stores. The Australian government is pretending this is to “protect” Australian companies. However, this applies to absolutely everything sent to Australia even if there is NO LOCAL competition. That is a greedy tariff. Simply said, Australia is really becoming the most anti-capitalist country in the West. The Australian dollar has been declining since 2011 and this hunt for taxes continues to expand with the most anti-free market laws in Western civilization. It is only a question of time before the USA turns and looks at the crazy laws coming from Australia and begins to retaliate.
The is absolutely no foundation in International Law that allows a country to impose obligations upon business in other countries and force them to collect taxes. The proper point to collect taxes is when goods are delivered to Australia – not that an Australian buys something overseas requires everyone in the world to collect Australian taxes for them. This is really just insane.