The European Union is planning to levy a tax on text and e-mail messages, as the 25-country union is seeking new ways to support itself. The idea is among several others being considered in committee as the parliament argues over a new budget. According to the proposal, a 1.5-cent tax on SMS messages, and a 0.00001-cent tax would be levied on each e-mail sent. It is not clear if users themselves or the companies providing the service would be responsible for the tax.
The proposal was brought to the table by French center-right lawmaker Alain Lamassoure. He called the tax “peanuts,” saying it could offer an “immense income” for the EU. In parts of Europe, the concept of a tax on text messaging has been already considered. Italy briefly toyed with the idea, but it was soundly rejected. At present a European Union working group is currently looking over the proposed legislation.