In its ruling of 5 March 2015, the European Court of Justice considered that France cannot apply a reduced VAT rate of 5.5% on digital or e-books insofar as said reduced rate is only applicable to supply of books “on any type of physical media” France must therefore apply a rate of 20% in order to comply with European law.
This decision could give rise to an order being made against France for applying a reduced rate of 2.1% to the electronic press. In fact European law expressly prohibits a reduced rate being granted to the online press and to electronic publications.
ECJ, 5 March, 2015: case C-479/13,
European Commission v French Republic