Inside the Australian and New Zealand book industry

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UK government to tax adult colouring books

The UK government’s tax department HMRC has sent letters to several publishers requesting the 20% value-added tax (VAT) be paid on adult colouring titles, reports the Bookseller. In the UK, print books and children’s colouring books are currently exempt from VAT. However, the Bookseller understands HMRC is challenging the classification of adult colouring and dot-to-dot titles as ‘books’, which could cost the industry ‘millions of pounds’ in unpaid VAT. UK Publishers Association CEO Stephen Lotinga said the organisation was working with publishers to communicate their ‘significant concerns’ over the HMRC’s decision. Michael O’Mara, chairman of Michael O’Mara Books, told the Bookseller: ‘Early this year, Michael O’Mara Books, along with several other publishers, were told by HMRC that it had “recently decided” to standard-rate for VAT so-called adult colouring books. It is our view that this decision flies in the face of the relevant legislation. We and other publishers, following the lead of the Publishers Association, are fighting this decision and we hope that HMRC, on reflection, recognise that they have got this wrong.’


Category: International news