The new rules which will enforce overseas retailers to charge GST on low value goods to NZ- based consumers is coming into force on 1 December 2019.

Today officials have released a special report, which provides early information on the new rules applying to “distantly taxable goods”.

The key features of the report include the scope of the new rules, how the rules apply to electronic marketplaces like Amazon, "Redeliverers", and New Zealand agents. It covers how the rules apply to prevent double taxation, and also a change to the GST rules in respect of vouchers.

On the face of it the rules appear to be fairly straight forward, however, the report provides 58 examples covering various situations, and indicates that it won’t always be clear depending on how goods are supplied and where parts are sourced from, and what happens when goods are returned.

While it would seem this mainly impacts overseas suppliers, there are impacts for NZ GST registered businesses who may receive goods, so it would still pay to have a good understanding of the rules.