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Get Ready, Government Begins Formulating E-commerce Tax

E-commerce in Indonesia has seen a rapid growth in the last few years. The government thus has begun formulating a new tax for e-commerce.

The growth of e-commerce is in line with the growth of internet users in Indonesia. A survey by the Association of Indonesian Internet Providers (APJII) revealed that there’s an increase in the number of internet users in 2017.

The number of internet users in Indonesia in 2017 was recorded to be 143.26 million, a 7.37% increase compared to the number in the previous year. It means about 54.68% of the total population has had access to the internet.

Moreover, citing data from Hootsuite, active users of mobile devices in January 2018 were recorded in an even greater number, 177.9 million. This figure was 1% higher than in the same month of the previous year.

Considering the potential, it is not an exaggeration to say that Indonesia is one of the most promising e-commerce markets in Asia. It is no surprise that a Chinese e-commerce giant was willing to invest in a certain Indonesian marketplace.

E-commerce players then hope to gain profits from the mouth-watering transaction values. Bank Indonesia recorded e-commerce transactions of Rp69.8 trillion in Indonesia in 2016.

Previously in 2014, the e-commerce sector booked Rp25 trillion in transactions. Calculating based on this increase, Bank Indonesia predicted that this year’s e-commerce transactions may hit Rp144 trillion.

New formula

Apparently, all the records have prompted the Finance Ministry to formulate a tax for e-commerce. Several related ministries have reportedly met to discuss the required aspects.

“Deliberation with several related ministries and institutions was carried out to know other views and considerations that are related to or influential to e-commerce activities,” Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said, as quoted by Kompas.com (January 19).

Currently, the Finance Ministry is deliberating the tax rulesfor e-commerce players, the majority of which are Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

“Basically, we’re leveling the playing field. It means that e-commerceand retailers have the same taxes,” Minister Ani says.

The main point of the deliberation is like a blow of fresh air to SME players. The finance minister revealed the plan to slash income tax, which currently stands at 1%, to only 0.5%.

“Probably the minimum threshold will also be lowered,” she added.

If the plan is realized, it will hopefully create an ecosystem that supports the growth of Indonesian e-commerce. Easy digital access is also an important factor for the people’s digital literacy.

The potential, backed by the government’s upcoming policy, will certainly stimulate e-commerce players to develop their business. Moreover, excellent logistics service will also support e-commerce.

E-commerce needs logistics service to ensure that the goods purchased can reach the correct buyer. Thus, a professional service like SELOG, a subsidiary of PT Serasi Autoraya (SERA) under Astra, offers the best logistics service.

SELOG guarantees safe and on-time service which ensures that goods will reach customers undamaged. Businessplayers can also use SELOG’s Warehouse Management System to continuously track packages from order acceptance, package pick-up, shipment, until order completion.

It is expected that an ecosystem that supports digital business can awaken the entrepreneur spirit of Indonesians. In turn, it will hopefully boost Indonesia’s economy to raise the life quality of the people.

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