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News Corp UK & Ireland v HMRC

In News Corp UK & Ireland v HMRC [2018] UKFTT 129 (8 March 2018) the FTT found that the digital versions of newspapers were not zero-rated under VATA 1994 Sch 8 Group 3 item 2.

News Corp is the representative member of a VAT group that publishes principally  The Times  The Sunday Times  The Sun and The Sun on Sunday. The issue was whether the daily digital versions of the titles were zero-rated.

News Corp contended that the purpose of zero-rating newspapers was to disseminate knowledge and information to aid literacy and to further the democratic process. Those features ‘were as true of the digital editions of the titles as they were of the print editions’. 

The FTT observed that it was accepted by both parties that the digital editions constituted supplies of services. It added that under the CJEU’s case law zero-rating must be interpreted strictly; and found...

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