What did the scientist Michael Faraday reply to the politician who asked him about the purpose of his newly invented electromagnetic induction? ‘Sir, I do not know what it is good for. But of one thing I am quite certain, some day you will tax it.’
Over the years, the growth of the digital economy – and how to tax it – propelled governments into asking whether existing tax rules are fit for the digital age. The creative tax practices, adopted by some of the largest tech companies, fuelled this question even further, and today, some of the global taxation rules affecting the digital economy are very close to being overhauled.