Require overseas companies to register for GST, and collect the tax just like any other retailer does.
Introduce a lower threshold for low value goods or abolish the threshold - where GST and duty has not been pre-paid, this should be collected at the border before the items are released.
Levy a fee on goods worth more than $25 to cover the cost of Customs and quarantine clearance, as happens in most other countries.
Key things to know
New Zealand is out of step with most other countries.
Canada has a CAD 20 threshold and the UK has a GBP 15 threshold. Tax is collected on all imports over these levels, as well as a fee to cover the costs of Customs clearance.
The Government is missing out on huge amounts of revenue as a result of the current loophole – enough to fund at least 4,345 new first-year primary teachers or more than 9,000 hip replacements.
The current loophole makes it hard for Kiwi retailers to compete with foreign websites that don't contribute to New Zealand.
The Government is looking at this issue through the OECD but most countries already charge tax on low value items crossing the border. The Government can and should take urgent action to close the loophole.
How can you help?
Please write urgently to your local MP. Please let them know how this issue is impacting your business and your community and what it would mean for your business and employees if the loophole was fixed. Booksellers NZ have provided an MP letter template on our website. Adjust this template to suit your store and your local MP.
Please use social media to tell the world about the impacts on your business. Use the #eFairnessNZ hashtag to tell your story.
Please tell your customers about how important it is to allow New Zealand stores to survive in a competitive world.
Check out the media links, template letters, submissions and other handy tools that Retail NZ have provided on their website to help engage your customers and communities in the debate: www.retail.kiwi/eFairnessNZ
Find Your Local MP: We have created a document that lists local and MPs and their addresses and matches them to the relevant membership bookstores. Please note this list is as accurate and up to date as possible but could contain some errors.