The United Arab Emirates is creating a new tax for their citizens called the “Vale Added Tax” which increases the price of goods by 5%. There are some exceptions, and books are one of them!
The Emirates Publishing Association’s Honaray President, Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, recognizes that increasing the taxes on books is a bad thing, because it can discourage people from buying books. She stated: “We have seen the negative impacts that taxes on reading materials can produce on publishing markets and reading habits around the world…this is a serious issue for the development of the publishing industry.”
Image courtesy of TheHansIndia.com
Al Qasimi wants to show the world “how important developing a national culture of reading is to the United Arab Emirates.” As readers, we couldn’t agree more. A 5% tax on books may not seem like a big deal, but for some, it could mean the difference between reading a book or not. Hopefully governments in the future will follow UAE’s lead and never allow books to be taxed.
Featured image courtesy of ArabianBusiness.com