In the Circular Letter No. 20 dated 18 May 2016, the Italian Revenue Agency has clarified that the 4 percent reduced VAT rate, applicable to paper editorial products, also applies to digital editorial products. The reduced VAT rate applies also in case the digital editorial products are made available only for a limited period of time and/or when such products are made available on websites offering other services (such as databases and searching functions). In order to take advantage of the reduced VAT rate, the digital products shall meet all the requirements of editorial products, including the indication of the ISBN or ISSN code.

Moreover, the Revenue Service clarified that the supply of a password to access to the digital version of an editorial product, included in the paper editorial products shall qualify for VAT purposes as a supply of goods and not as a supply of e-services.