A move that ignites controversy .. Egypt imposes taxes on Internet content producers

The Egyptian government has decided to impose taxes on Internet content creators, whose income from the business exceeds 500,000 Egyptian pounds (about $ 32,000) per year, sparking controversy on the platforms of the social media.

In a statement on Saturday, the Egyptian tax authority had asked: “People who carry out content creation activities (bloggers – YouTubers) must go to the tax office, where the business is located, to open a tax file “.

He explained that “enrollment in the competent value-added mission (is done) every time their revenues reach 500,000 pounds within 12 months from the date of operation of the activity”.

Content creators online in Egypt are not subject to, As a blogger and influencer on social media, for a formal framework that regulates their activities.

And the Internet is used in Egypt, the most populous Arab country with more than 100 million people, about 60 million people, according to the latest figures from the Egyptian Ministry of Communications.

According to the site web of international statistics Data Report, since last January 49 million people have used platforms of social media in Egypt.

In a telephone interview on state television, Mohamed El-Gayyar, director of the taxpayer service at the tax authority, said on Sunday: “Anyone who generates revenue. in Egypt has to pay taxes due to him, regardless of his business. “

He has provided examples of “e-commerce, bloggers and YouTubers” providing content on the popular video site “YouTube”.

“Many businesses generate revenue without a tax file,” El-Gayyar added, noting that the Egyptian government has reached out to some international companies such as Facebook and YouTube to help identify the people to whom the decision applies.

Leave the country

Different platform users of social media they expressed their disappointment at the decision, and one wrote on Twitter: “These people (content creators) are literally investing in the impossible to do something good, instead of the state helping them, I have decided (to) suffocate them. (make them leave the country). “

Another wrote: “If the government is going to tax YouTubers and people on the Internet, it should improve the quality of the Internet and cancel the limited package,” referring to the speed of the Internet.

In recent years, Egypt has imposed some restrictions on Internet users. In 2018, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi approved a law aimed at “regulating the press and media”And allow the Supreme Council for the regulation on media, formed by presidential decree, to monitor some user accounts of social media with more than 5,000 followers.

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