SWEDEN: Tax authorities get tough on online sales
Skatteverket, Sweden's National Taxation Office, has signalled that it may ask the Government to provide it with new legal powers to force online alcohol sales companies to disclose the names of their Sweden-based customers.
Skatteverket claims that customers of online alcohol sales companies are engaged in "tax avoidance practices", and that it plans to close the loophole.
"The sale of alcohol products is subject to tax in Sweden, and we are prepared to seek new powers to ensure that such taxes are paid," said Skatteverket director Niclas Rönnberg. "It is important that online sales companies cooperate in providing details about the names and transaction of their clients. We are receiving a good deal of cooperation from authorities in Germany and Spain where these products originate."
However, online drinks firms say they will join forces to contest any attempt by Skatteverket to force companies to disclose the details of transactions or identity of their online customers.
"We will not freely disclose information pertaining to our customers to Skatteverket, and our legal position is that Skatteverket can not force us to do so. We will take this to court if we must," said Kari Sjöblom, the CEO of online company Vinboden.
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