Tax on Netflix, Spotify, Apple Music, Apple TV and Others Will (Potentially) Be Charging Customers GST In 2020!
 
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Tax on Netflix, Spotify, Apple Music, Apple TV and Others Will (Potentially) Be Charging Customers GST In 2020!

Rachel Yeo
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Overseas music and movie-streaming giants like Netflix and Spotify will be charging GST to consumers, starting 1 Jan 2020, a move that affects more than 100 overseas vendors of online services.

The change was announced in the 2018’s Budget and will generate S$90 million per year in tax revenue for Singapore.

Similar measures have also been taken in countries like Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea since 2015.

TL;DR: Here’s How Much More You’ll (Potentially) Be Paying For Netflix, Spotify, Apple Music, TV Etc. With The New GST Rule

gst tv streaming services

Affected Providers Subscription Fee With GST? (7%)How Much More Do You Pay/Month
Apple TV $4.99/mth$5.34/mth$0.35/mth
Apple Music $9.99/mth
$14.99/mth (Family)
$10.69/mth
$16.04/mth
$0.70-$1.05/mth
Netflix $10.98 (Basic)
$13.98 (Standard)
$16.98 (Premium)
$11.75 (Basic)
$14.96(Standard)
$18.17 (Premium)
$0.77-$1.19/mth
Spotify$9.90/mth (individual)
$14.98/mth (family)
$4.99/mth (student)
$10.60/mth (individual)
$16.03/mth (family)
$5.34/mth
$0.70-$1.05/mth

*Important Note: The rates shown here are the projected ones with the 7% GST implemented. There may be cases where these service providers choose to absorb the GST in order to keep prices constant for consumers. We’ll update this article as soon as we get more information as to which service providers are passing the 7% GST charge onto consumers, so stay tuned! 🙂

Who Will Be Affected?

Currently, digital services from local Singapore companies are already subjected to GST.

Consumers of overseas digital services currently do not pay for GST.

However, this ruling will change from 1 January 2020, where both local and overseas digital services will be charged GST.

Digital service providers with a yearly global turnover of more than $1 million, and sells more than $100,000 of digital services to locals are required to charge GST.

Some of the more popular services affected include: Netflix, Spotify, Amazon, Apple Music, and Apple TV. 

Some online streaming services such as HBO Go have already factored in GST, so there will be no additional changes to these streaming services in January 2020.

Here are some digital services by overseas providers that will potentially start charging GST, starting January 2020:

  • Downloadable digital content
  • Subscription-based media
  • Software Programs – e.g photoshop, anti-virus softwares etc.
  • Electronic Data Management – website hosting, cloud storage

What’s NOT affected:

  • Online shopping for goods below $400.

How Much More Will I Potentially Have To Pay?

Affected Providers Subscription Fee With GST? (7%)How Much More Do You Pay/Month
Apple TV $4.99/mth$5.34/mth$0.35/mth
Apple Music $9.99/mth
$14.99/mth (Family)
$10.69/mth
$16.04/mth
$0.70-$1.05/mth
Netflix $10.98 (Basic)
$13.98 (Standard)
$16.98 (Premium)
$11.75 (Basic)
$14.96(Standard)
$18.17 (Premium)
$0.77-$1.19/mth
Spotify$9.90/mth (individual)
$14.98/mth (family)
$4.99/mth (student)
$10.60/mth (individual)
$16.03/mth (family)
$5.34/mth
$0.70-$1.05/mth

Naturally, some service providers might choose to absorb the GST charge in order to keep their prices competitive or because they really love their customers (looks at Netflix and Spotify with pleading eyes).

So once we get a confirmed list of services who will pass on the 7% GST charge to consumers, we’ll update this article with the latest prices!

How Can I Check If An Online Service Is Allowed To Charge GST?

Not all overseas companies are entitled to charge you GST.

You can check with the IRAS to see if the company you’re buying from is being taxed GST.

Of course, you are encouraged to report fraudulent GST charges for online services immediately, especially if they are not registered to charge you!

GST For Overseas Online Services

As we can see, the difference in fees each month is rather small, but recurring fees do add up!

If you are interested in checking out other forms of TV entertainment, here are some alternatives you can try!

I also highly recommend sharing your online subscription packages with friends and family, so that you can continue to enjoy these services at a much lower cost.

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