Airbnb Inc has agreed to work with Malaysia on tax collection, with initial efforts to focus on a tourism levy as the government prepares to cast a wider net on the digital economy.
The San Francisco-based home-sharing company is moving to finalize a deal with tax authorities, which will apply a new tourism tax of RM10 ($2.55) per night to Airbnb members who rent out five rooms or more. The tourism levy presages an agreement on goods and services taxes.
“We have been engaging the Malaysian authorities in meaningful and productive conversations,” Mich Goh, Airbnb’s head of public policy for Southeast Asia, told Bloomberg Tax. “We want to help our hosts follow the rules, and we are actively keeping them informed of all regulatory updates,” she said.
The levies won’t stop there, says EY partner for indirect tax Aaron Bromley. After speaking with tax officials, he expects Malaysia to widen the scope of GST to include Airbnb arrangements as early as this year. The country is one of Airbnb’s fastest-growing markets in Asia, with rentals jumping 137 percent last year, the company said.