Electronic publications

The second reduced rate of Value-Added Tax (VAT) applies to certain electronic publications. Electronic publications include certain e-newspapers, e-periodicals and e-books.

An e-newspaper is the electronically supplied publication of its printed equivalent. In this case additional content may appear online which does not appear in print. Examples of such e-newspapers include:

  • breaking news updated as the story develops
  • commissioned online only content
  • expanded online versions of articles.

An e-periodical is the electronically supplied publication of its printed equivalent. E-periodicals are publications that are published at regular intervals. Examples of such e-periodicals include:

  • daily or less frequent newspapers
  • weekly magazines
  • quarterly journals.

An e-book is the electronically supplied publication of its printed equivalent.

The second reduced rate of VAT applies to the electronic publications of:

  • brochures, leaflets and similar publications, audio books supplied in electronic format
  • children's picture, drawing or colouring books
  • music printed or in manuscript form.

For detailed information on the VAT treatment of electronic publications, please see Further guidance.

However, audio books supplied in physical format are liable to VAT at the standard rate. For detailed information on the VAT treatment of printed matter, please see Further guidance.