Reforming mobile sector taxation in Argentina
Mobile telephone services play an increasingly important role in supporting and delivering development, economic growth and social inclusion. Mobile penetration and affordability enhance digital connectivity by expanding internet and broadband access, which in turn facilitate the reduction of barriers for trade, commerce, communication, service delivery, and human development. Examples of these benefits are seen in the form of financial inclusion via mobile payment platforms, digitally enabled local entrepreneurship, innovative health and education delivery systems, and growing numbers of e-government initiatives.
The mobile industry needs supportive regulatory conditions in order to thrive and maximise the opportunities available to consumers, businesses, and governments. Within this, taxation is an important factor with the need to achieve the right balance between revenue maximisation and economic growth and social development being at the heart of the policy.
In Argentina, the lack of affordability of mobile services, particularly for low-income groups, is constraining the potential for further growth due to high levels of taxation in comparison to other sectors and regional benchmarks. Despite the widespread use of basic technologies, affordability issues are a barrier to usage and migration to new technologies. In order to assess the potential benefits of a more efficient tax structure in the mobile sector, one which focuses on increasing mobile affordability and unlocking digital inclusion, the GSM Association1 has commissioned EY to undertake a study of the economic impact of potential tax reforms on the Argentine mobile sector.