EU May Tax SMS, E-Mail Messages

The European Union is considering a tax on text and e-mail messages, as the 25-country bloc looks for new ways to fund itself. The idea is among several others being floated in committee as the parliament argues over a new budget. According to the propsal, a 1.5-cent tax on SMS messages, and a 0.00001-cent tax would be levied on each e-mail sent. It is not clear if users themselves or the companies providing the service would be responsible for the tax.

The proposal was brought to the table by French center-right lawmaker Alain Lamassoure. He called the tax "peanuts," saying it could provide an "immense income" for the EU. In parts of Europe, the concept of a tax on text messaging has been already considered. Italy briefly toyed with the idea, but it was soundly rejected. A European Union working group is currently looking over the proposed legislation.

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