telecommunications tax
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Jordan to impose farm animal tax on phones and electricity

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It may sound weird at first but it’s true. Jordan’s parlament has decided Wednesday to impose a tax as high as 1 Fils (a bit more than one tenth of $0.01 if I calculated that correctly) per minute for phone connections and 1 kilowatt hour of electricity.

The aim of the law is to raise $18.5 million to subsidize loans for people in the Arabian country who need to buy farm animals such as sheep. Only 30 of 110 members of parlament voted against the tax, which was previously planned to be higher as Jordan wanted to include web connections in the taxation.

Reportedly, telcoms in the country not only need to pay sales tax of 16% but also a 4.5% special tax that’s normally imposed for alcohol and cigarettes. In addition, Jordan-based companies in that sector need to give 10% of yearly revenue and 25% of all profits to the government.

94% of all 6 million Jordanians own at least one cell phone, while 75% own several handsets. Telecom companies in the country are now hoping that the law will be stopped by the Upper House.

Via Heise [GER]

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