PAB WTO, U.S. agreement on Net taxes expected

Sascha Ignjatovic (
Tue, 19 May 1998 04:52:50 +0200 (MET DST),4,22215,00.html

WTO, U.S. agreement on Net taxes

By Reuters
Special to CNET NEWS.COM
May 18, 1998, 9:25 a.m. PT

NEW YORK--The Clinton administration is
close to announcing an agreement that would
limit international tariffs on international
commerce conducted over the Internet, a senior
presidential advisor said today.

Speaking at an Internet commerce symposium
hosted by IBM, senior presidential advisor Ira
Magaziner said an announcement of an
agreement with the World Trade Organization
could come as soon as today.

Magaziner said the Clinton administration "would
like to see the Internet develop as a duty-free

"With any luck," he said, such an agreement
could be announced by the president "within a
couple of hours." He did not give any details or
elaborate on what kind of commercial activity the
agreement would cover.

The agreement would close one of the major
gaps in global acceptance of widespread
Internet commerce.

However, other hurdles remain. As Magaziner
noted, the United States and the European
Union are working to close a wide disparity in
their visions of how best to protect consumer

The United States favors a corporate-led form
of self-regulation, while Europe is seeking
government regulation.

Story Copyright 1998 Reuters Limited. All rights