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Issues covered by the WTO’s committees and agreements

Programme and presentations for the seminar on revenue implications of e-commerce

The seminar was organized on April 22, 2002 under the auspices of the WTO Committee on Trade and Development. The proceedings are intended to serve as an input into the Committee's consideration of the issue of electronic commerce as part of the overall WTO Work Programme. 

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Chair: Ambassador Mary Whelan, Ireland
Download “Oral Report by the Chairperson of the seminar”, Word format, 30KB

First Session: Trends in e-commerce back to top

  • Statistics on the evolution of e-commerce

  • Recent developments and forecasts

- Mrs. Julie Meringer, Group Director, European Research and Managing Director UK, Forrester Research.
Download “E-Commerce Next Wave: Productivity and Innovation”,
powerpoint presentation, 883KB

Second Session: Revenue effects of e-commerce and the underlying information technology back to top


  • How the development of e-commerce affects and may affect government revenue (customs tariffs, consumption taxes, income taxes)
  • How information technologies provide opportunities for tax authorities

Mr. Walter Hellerstein, Francis Shackelford Professor of Taxation - University of Georgia Law School, United States
Download “Electronic Commerce and the Challenge for Tax Administration”, powerpoint presentation, 89KB
Download “Electronic commerce and the challenge for tax administration”, Word format, 92KB

Development Dimension

  • Sources of government revenue in developing countries, dependence on tariffs and taxes
  • Current taxation practices in developing countries
  • Implications of the moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions for developing countries
  • Other revenue implications of e-commerce for developing countries: sales tax, profit tax, etc.

Dr. Susanne Teltscher, Economic Affairs Officer, E-Commerce Branch, UNCTAD
Download “Revenue Implications of E-Commerce: The Development Dimension”, powerpoint presentation, 842KB


Third Session: Fiscal implications of e-commerce: A WTO perspective back to top

  • GATT/GATS implications for customs duties (discrimination, progressive liberalization and classification)
  • GATT/GATS implications for internal taxation (non-discrimination, regulatory issues and classification)
  • Issues related to harmonization
  • Considerations relating to the moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions

Mrs. Lee Tuthill, Counsellor, Trade in Services Division, WTO
Download “WTO implications of classification issues”, powerpoint presentation, 291KB


Fourth Session: Government and Private Sector Experiences 
back to top

  • Government experiences
  • Private sector experiences

- Mr. Arthur Kerrigan, Head of Sector, International Services, Electronic Commerce and Financial Services, Directorate-General for Taxation and the Customs Union, European Communities
Mr. Suhaimi Nordin, Senior Manager, E-Commerce, Multimedia Development Corporation, Malaysia
Download “Government and Private Sector Experiences”, powerpoint presentation, 2038KB
Senator Philip Goddard, Special envoy for technology, trade and investment, Prime Minister's Office, Barbados
Download “WTO Seminar on Revenue Implications of E-commerce”, Word format, 26KB
Mr. Morten Sven Johannessen, Corporate Project Leader for E-business, Statoil, Norway
Download “e-Business in an international oil company”, powerpoint presentation, 2041KB
Mr. James M. Kiiru, Department of External Trade, Ministry of Trade And Industry, Kenya
Download “Revenue implications of e-commerce for development”, Word format, 50KB

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The 1999 seminar report