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Sales tax on online shopping coming?

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I read two news this week, which makes me think this is coming. Keep in mind many local governments are upside down in terms of budget and debts, any tax revenue helps. Collecting tax revenue from online merchants in remote places like Seattle (HQ of Amazon) is a convenient choice.

Expedia (Nasdaq: EXPE) tax lawsuit (source: hotel-online): from my reading, basically the dispute is around the basis of tax, we know Expedia sells hotel room at discounted rates, but the local government (Columbus, GA in this case) think it should be the listed price. I am not lawyer but I lean towards the discounted rate.

Amazon may stop doing affiliate business. Quote WSJ Amazon Threatens Cuts Over State Taxes:

The Wall Street Journal reports that (Nasdaq: AMZN) may stop doing business with some of its marketing affiliates over state taxes.

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Jinjiang Inn Hook up with Expedia

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Zhao Huan Yan published his January report for China domestic hotels industry. I am interested to learn some update on the economy chain such as Jinjiang Inns. I noticed Expedia, the leading US online travel consolidator, is establishing partnership with Jinjiang Inn. It seems foreigners can use expedia to book the Jinjiang Inn soon.

(Update 04Feb07) I looked up expedia, it appears you can book many 2.5 stars (and up) hotels in Shanghai right now, some of them are belong to Jinjiang group (such as the famous Peace Hotel in Nanjing Rd Bund). Have not seen Jinjiang Inn (or Jinjiang Stars yet).

I vaguely remember the foreigners make up about 7 to 8% of guests for Jinjiang and Home Inns (Rujia). This includes the foreigners already in China. In other words, I don’t expect Expedia Jinjiang partnership to give Jinjiang Inn a huge leg up in this “foreigners market”.

jin jiang Inn

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