Amazon to block Aus shoppers from U.S. website


The call not to ship overseas to Australia may see the use of geo-blocking software to avoid the ban.

"While we regret any inconvenience this may cause customers, we have had to assess the workability of the legislation as a global business with multiple worldwide sites", an Amazon spokeswoman said.

The retail giant said it would subject Australians to the process known as "geoblocking" from July 1, when a 10 percent Goods and Services Tax (GST) applies to imported online goods worth less than A$1,000 ($756).

Amazon is launching a global store accessible to Australian customers, where products from its retail site will be available.

Jeff Bezos' Bazaar told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that from July 1, 2018, it will redirect Australian visitors to Amazon Australia - which is pretty lame compared to the full - but does charge GST (which us Australia's equivalent of sales tax or VAT). Amazon has made this move primarily due to new GST rules that will force them to apply a 10% GST to goods purchased on global sites and shipped to Australia.

The GST is set to come into effect on July 1, this year, when Amazon also plans to enforce the geo-fencing of Australian users to their local store.

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The retailer said it would compensate by opening a "global store" for Australians, adding an extra four million items previously available only on its American website.

"This isn't an anti-trade move by the Australian government", he said.

Dr. Minifie, the economist, said that Amazon would probably continue to build a healthy customer base in Australia despite the change.

Based on our assessment, we will redirect Australian customers from our worldwide sites to where they can shop for products sold by Amazon US on the new Global Store, available today.

According to the The Sydney Morning Herald, Amazon's USA site provides access to roughly 500 million items, as opposed to the Aussie version, which features around 60 million products.

Australian Treasurer Scott Morrison announced the change in April 2017, eight months before Amazon opened its Australian unit.