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Barcelona to introduce ´Amazon´ tax

High-turnover delivery companies will have to pay a special tax in March next year. Image: Twitter

Spain´s Barcelona will be the first city in Europe to charge big companies a tax on online deliveries

Barcelona will begin charging a so-called “Amazon tax” in March 2023. The scheme would track the distribution of goods ordered online that are delivered to homes and businesses.

The tax will eventually be levied for the special use (for “marketing”) of public space for postal operators who deliver to households after more than three years of monitoring.

Only large postal service providers—those who turnover more than one million euros annually for deliveries in the city—will be eligible to pay the cost. Also, charges will apply only when the delivery is made at home rather than when the goods are left at collection locations (lockers).

Companies like Amazon, DHL, UPS, Seur, MRW, and Correos Express are some of the community’s leading operators, stated a spokesperson for the administration.

The mayor stated that the rate will be the first of its kind in Europe, saying that she has spoken to the operators who will be responsible for paying it- although sources at Amazon have so far declined to comment on the policy.

Defending the tax, the first deputy mayor for the Economy, Jaume Collboni, said;

“The tax seeks a change in habits towards local commerce, equalizing conditions with e-commerce so that more and more of us go to collection points and avoid having the city full of delivery vehicles occupying public space and causing congestion and pollution.”

The new tax has been promoted by the coalition government (Barcelona en comú and PSC), and with the support of ERC, an alliance that ensures a majority in the next votes that the proposal faces and its implementation in March, two months after the elections.

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