The Canary Islands stop collecting 156 million IGIC from e-commerce

75% of online purchases on the islands are of low value products and exempt from IGIC. / ARCADIO SUAREZ

75% of e-commerce purchases made in the Canary Islands are for less than 150 euros and are exempt from IGIC. The commercial sector calls for the elimination

Silvia Fernandez

The electronic commerce of the Canary Islands generated in 2020last year for which there are data, a total of
2,080.8 million euros.

Of the total billing, almost 75% of the purchases were of low value, that is, for less than 150 euros, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics (INE).

These purchases on the islands are exempt from paying the IGIC, which means that around
1,560 million euros of electronic commerce did not pay the tax rates ranging between 3% and 15%.

Starting from an average of 10%, the regional Executive failed to collect 156 million euros of IGIC from 'e-commerce', according to a report handled by the commercial sector of the archipelago.

In the Canary Islands, both large and small businessmen have asked the Regional Government's Treasury Department to eliminate the IGIC exemption for low-value purchases, considering that it is unfair competition and detrimental to the retail sector. islands.

In addition to the impact it leaves on public accounts.

The sector calculates that electronic commerce moves almost 5.6 million euros a day, with which
the loss of collection by the IGIC is close to half a million daily.

Half of the purchases, from suppliers outside Europe

Sources from the commercial sector also highlight that half of internet purchases made in the Canary Islands are transactions with companies that are outside the European Union, according to the latest e-commerce report prepared by
the Canary Islands Telecommunications and Information Society Observatory (OCTSI).

The study shows that
51.5% of purchases made in the Canary Islands are from sellers outside of Spain. The percentage of the islands exceeds the national figure by almost 20 points (32%).

As regards national purchases, Canarians register a percentage of 77% (there are multiple answers) while in the country as a whole Spanish vendors are chosen by 94%.

The report indicates that during the year 2020, the quota of national sellers was reduced both in the Canary Islands and in the peninsula and that of foreigners, both from the EU and from the rest of the world, increased.

A serious problem: 'It is not sent to the Canary Islands'

Among the problems that canaries have when making purchases online, the latest OCTSI report includes as
the main drawback of 'e-commerce' is the delay in deliveries. The problem is greater for Canarians (72%) than for nationals (68%).
Second, the handicap is that sellers do not ship to the islands. It is pointed out by 43% of the islanders compared to 11% nationally.

The large difference highlights the problem that the islands have with electronic commerce and that they represent a
pain for companies.

They prefer to lose the Canarian market than to face the extra costs of returns due to the rejection of the merchandise by the buyers when verifying that the final costs exceed those indicated at the time of purchase.

Precisely this is another of the problems that canaries have with electronic commerce. This inconvenience is indicated by 23% of Canarians compared to 11% of nationals.

Another problem What the islanders encounter is the lack of information on guarantees and rights. Perhaps for all these reasons, the frequency of online purchases per user is lower on the islands.

51% of regular buyers in the Canary Islands buy once or twice, while people who buy six or more times account for 16% in the Canary Islands and 27% nationally.

Those who buy more than 10 times in three months are 7% compared to 14% nationally, according to the OCTSI report on electronic commerce.

Turnover grew by 12% on the islands in the year of confinement

A total of 926,000 Canarians bought online on the islands at least once during 2020 (the year of covid and confinement), 4% more than the previous year. Nationally, this figure stands at 66.6% of the population, after growing by 6.4% in the last year.

The population that makes purchases more frequently (last three months) stands at 36.5% in the Canary Islands compared to the national average of 55.2%.

The figures show that there is a brake on the islands that prevents higher levels of 'e-commerce'.

In 2020, online buyers increased by 4% in the Canary Islands, but turnover increased by almost 13%, in an atypical year in which, due to confinement, many purchases were derived from the online channel. In total, 2,081 million were moved.

This estimated turnover of electronic commerce represents 5.31% of the regional GDP, compared to 3.89% in 2019. Both the growth of the electronic commerce business and the fall in GDP (17.5% in the Canary Islands .

The usual buyer profile in the Canary Islands would be that of a person under 45 years of age, with vocational training or university studies, with medium-high or high income, and resident in a population of between 10,000 and 20,000 inhabitants or more than 100,000 inhabitants.

Regarding the products and services purchased by Canarians through the internet throughout the year 2020, the star products are clothing, shoes or accessories, with a percentage of 54%. In this segment there is still potential to grow considering that at the national level the rate is 67%.

Restaurant deliveries account for 35% compared to 39% for the State as a whole and in third place are home accessories, with 25% compared to 30% nationally.

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