Can Foreign Affiliate Marketing Income Be Deemed As Intermediary Broker Service


Vijay N
watch_later 3 months ago

Hi, 

My question is - if the foreign affiliate income(like Amazon, Bluehost) which is a commission-  is challenged by an officer as being like a broker service and so cannot be accepted as "Export of service" under OIDAR, how can this be explained in our favor?

Noone has challenged anything until now and this is a question that has cropped up in my own mind.  I would sleep better knowing there is a logical counter answer to such a question.

Your answer will benefit many I am sure.

Thanks in advance!

 

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1 Answer

Vijay N watch_later 3 months ago
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I think below is a justification. 

Online Information Database Access and Retrieval services
(hereinafter referred to as OIDAR) is a category of services
provided through the medium of internet and received by the
recipient online without having any physical interface with the
supplier of such services. 

The IGST Act defines OIDAR to mean services whose delivery
is mediated by information technology over the internet or an
electronic network and the nature of which renders their supply
essentially automated and involving minimal human intervention
and impossible to ensure in the absence of information technology
and includes electronic services such as, ––
(i) advertising on the internet;
(ii) providing cloud services;
(iii) provision of e-books, movie, music, software and other
intangibles through telecommunication networks or internet;
(iv) providing data or information, retrievable or otherwise, to
any person in electronic form through a computer network;
(v) online supplies of digital content (movies, television shows,
music and the like);
(vi) digital data storage; and
(vii) online gaming

https://www.cbic.gov.in/resources//htdocs-cbec/gst/OIDAR.pdf

So it is fairly clear that affiliate marketing and its associated income comes under OIDAR as 

1. Service is provided over the internet.
2. Automated with no physical interaction. 
3. Is a form of Advertising on the internet.

Now the counter to someone saying  - what you receive is still a commission in the end, no matter how you provide service.

Countering this:
Foremost is what your service is about and how you provide your service. Once we are classified under OIDAR, everything else is secondary.

Further views on this is appreciated. Pulkit?

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