When it comes to currency, the EC is borderless; when it comes to e-books — not so much. Could this change? You will be surprised – it might be the European Commission that makes it happen:
European publishers and a member of the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) responsible for the e-book standard ePub, met with the Vice-President of the European Commission, Ms Kroes to discuss the future of e-books.
Publishers called for reduced rates of VAT for e-books and Ms Kroes has reassured them that she was standing behind them on this issue. The goodwill has to come from the Finance Ministers.
The publishers also insisted that they are signing licences with authors allowing them to distribute the books in a said language on a pan-European basis. There is no obstacle in the contract between publishers and retailers which prevent these retailers to sell a German e-book to Greece or a Spanish e-book to the United Kingdom for example and to make sure that as many readers have access to as many books as possible, this is an issue of cultural diversity.