Michaela Merz


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Swiss public votes NO – Financing of the AHV by increasing the VAT rate


At yesterday’s popular vote, the Swiss voters have refused to raise the VAT rates in order to finance old age pensions.

Since a temporary VAT rate increase from the past runs out, the VAT rates will actually decrease: Continue reading


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Machine Learning – Childish Game or The Future is Here?


When I was a young child, I was fascinated by a Bagatelle board. Firing small metal balls to the top of a ramp, I could watch them fall, bouncing of metal pins, to ultimately end up in a number of different scoring zones. Now, many years on, I like to think about Machine Learning in a similar way. The scoring zones are the outputs of the Machine, the place you drop the ball, and the nature of the ball, represent the different inputs, and the ‘randomly arranged’ pins which deflect the balls on their journey to the scoring zone are the inner workings of Machine Learning. Continue reading


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Russia – draft legislation on VAT on B2C supply of electronic services


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Russia can be the next in line to join the countries that impose VAT on the B2C supply of electronic services by non-established service provider. A draft legislation that would require foreign companies to start charging VAT on internet / digital services provided to individuals is currently being considered by the Russian State Duma. Continue reading


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New Zealand – Tax Bill proposes GST registration for foreign B2C e-service providers as of 1 October 2016


People walking in a plaza/square - PwC, Photo_RGB_PC_ 442.jpgFurther to my previous post the New Zealand Government submitted its legislative proposal in relation to the GST law reform on offshore online purchases of services.

The Government has followed the modern VAT/GST practices and OECD recommendations and has decided to reform the GST system. The reforms focus on two main Areas:
1. Digital products and cross border services, in respect of which draft legislation proposes imposing GST on digital products and other Services purchased by New Zealand private consumers from offshore sellers. The new rules will apply from 1 October 2016. Continue reading