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Parcel delivery for online retail is supposed to save inner cities

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A new parcel delivery should benefit the retail trade in the city centers. Online retailers are to pay into a new inner city fund for each package.

Online retailers are likely to face a new tax. The Union in the Bundestag is planning a package delivery for online orders like the Welt am Sonntag reports. The money is intended to benefit retailers suffering from the lockdown.

Delivery depending on the order value

The amount of the fee should be based on the order value. Online retailers should decide for themselves whether this will increase the price or whether the tax will be added.

In this way, the online trade should share in the costs of municipal infrastructure. “This eliminates the imbalance in relation to the stationary retail trade, which already today contributes significantly to the municipal budget with its taxes”, quoted Die Welt am Sonntag from a policy paper.

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Negotiations about a digital tax have been stalling for months at the OECD level.

SPD supports the proposal

Compared to the Editorial network Germany The local political spokesman for the SPD parliamentary group, Bernhard Daldrup, praised the proposal. According to him, such a levy would provide more equality of opportunity between commerce on the Internet and in the city centers.

Daldrup also calls for returns to be made chargeable in order to reduce the traffic caused by online orders.

Criticism from the trade association and FDP

From the point of view of the German Trade Association (HDE), a package tax would be the wrong measure. It would also hit domestic online retailers who already pay taxes in Germany, HDE managing director Stefan Genth told dpa.

Instead, Genth is calling for better controls over product safety and tax payments in international online retail. In his opinion, sales channels should not be played off against each other, but rather combined.

FDP parliamentary group vice Michael Theurer described the plans as a bureaucratic monster. A reliable perspective on opening times in the next year is more important for retailers.

More help for retailers

The planned package delivery should go to the tax office and flow into a new fund for city centers. This is part of the planned “pact for lively inner cities”, reports Die Welt am Sonntag.

In addition to the parcel levy, tax money should also flow into the fund. Businesses affected by the lockdown are also to receive more generous bridging aid, quick loans and tax breaks.

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