Vietnam information minister, Nguyen Manh Hung is accusing foreign streaming companies like Netflix and Apple of evading their tax responsibilities. The minister says their actions create unfair competition for domestic firms.
“Domestic companies have to abide by tax and content regulations while foreign firms do not, which is unfair competition. Some content on Netflix has flouted regulations related to the history and sovereignty of the country, violence, drug use, and s*x,” Nguyen said in a government meeting.
The streaming companies have combined revenues of about $43.15 million. They also have about one million subscribers, according to the information and communications ministry, who alleged that they have never paid tax in Vietnam.
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Netflix says it would continue to engage with the government on potential regulations regarding its services accessible in Vietnam.
“We are supportive of the implementation of a mechanism that will make it possible for foreign service providers like Netflix to collect and remit taxes in Vietnam. However today such a mechanism does not exist,” a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement.
The country also introduced a cybersecurity law regulation in 2018, requiring all online foreign businesses in the country to store their data in Vietnam. However, Netflix says it has no plans to keep its servers locally or even open a local office in Vietnam at the moment.
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