Withholding tax (WHT)

Due to requirements in some local markets, withholding taxes (WHT) may apply to developers offering Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made in those countries.

We strongly recommend that developers consult with a professional tax advisor to understand your individual tax implications in the affected markets and for guidance on the potential impact on your business.

Region and country-specific guidelines

Brazil

If you offer Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via any available form of payment by customers in Brazil, Google or its payment processor partners will deduct the full cost of Brazilian withholding taxes (WHT), equal to 25% (15% IRRF plus 10% CIDE) of the customer purchase price, from your revenue share payments.

Withholding taxes are applicable to non-local developers only, however if you are a Brazilian developer paid in non-BRL currency, withholding taxes will be deducted from your revenue share payments. You can migrate to a BRL account by following the steps detailed here, and find additional details about currency support for Brazilian Real and required taxes.

As part of our service to developers, Google is constantly monitoring changes to tax regulation and will modify/notify developers of changes to Google’s approach accordingly.

Egypt

If you offer Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via direct carrier billing (DCB) by customers in Egypt, Google or its payment processor partners will deduct up to 20% of withholding tax (WHT).

India

If you're located in India and offer Google Play Store app and in-app purchases, Google will deduct Indian withholding taxes (WHT) from your proceeds and deposit such WHT with the Government of India. The amount of such WHT is equal to:

  • 1% of the customer purchase price (excluding India GST) from proceeds due to you from Google, if you have provided your Permanent Account Number (PAN) to Google; or 
  • 5% of the customer purchase price (excluding India GST) from proceeds due to you from Google, if you have not provided your PAN to Google. 

To apply the correct rate of withholding tax, Google is required to collect your Indian PAN. Here’s how you can provide Google with your PAN:

  1. Open Play Console and go to the Payments profile page (Setup Settings > Payments profile).
  2. In the "Settings" section, click Manage settings.
  3. Scroll down to "India tax info" and click the pencil icon Pencil icon / edit icon.
  4. Enter or update your PAN.
  5. Click Save.
Kuwait

If you offer Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via direct carrier billing (DCB) by customers in Kuwait, Google or its payment processor partners may deduct up to 5% of withholding tax (WHT).

Myanmar

If you offer Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via direct carrier billing (DCB) by customers in Myanmar, Google or its payment processor partners will deduct up to 2.5% of withholding tax (WHT).

Sri Lanka

If you offer Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via direct carrier billing (DCB) by customers in Sri Lanka, Google or its payment processor partners will deduct up to 10% of withholding tax (WHT).

Taiwan

Under the local Taiwan tax legislation, Google is obligated to withhold tax on payments made to you, where such payments are associated with sales you have made to end users in Taiwan through the Play Store. 

This affects developers who do not possess either:

  • A Taiwan VAT ID (8 digit numeral number) or
  • A foreign TIN registered in Taiwan

If you are unable to provide any Taiwan VAT ID or tax registration in Taiwan, Google is obligated to apply and deduct a 3% withholding tax on the payment made to you for all of your transactions with users in Taiwan. In addition, if Google is applying the withholding tax, Google will not be able to provide a specific withholding tax certificate issued by the Taiwanese tax authorities in your name.

If you have any questions or require assistance, you can contact Google Play developer support for help.

Withholding tax documents

The following withholding tax documents are available for download from the Download financial reports page (Download reports > Financial) in Play Console. You must have the View financial data, orders, and cancellation data survey responses permission.

Withholding tax document

Google currently provides an annual withholding tax statement, which reflects the withholding rates and amounts deducted from your earnings proceeds by country for the calendar year. 

These information statements are not official government documents and have been prepared by Google for your informational purposes only. They are not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Please consult your tax adviser for specific advice regarding the information statement.

India withholding tax certificates (Form 16A) 

India withholding tax certificates (Form 16A) are provided quarterly for developers with a merchant account based in India. The details (e.g., PAN, the legal name of the PAN holder, etc.) you provide in your payment profile must be correct.

These certificates will be available 15 days after the filing date for the quarter. For example, the Q4 2020 filing date is January 31st, 2021, so certificates will be accessible from February 15th, 2021.

Frequently asked questions

Global questions

Why is the developer responsible for these charges?

Withholding taxes are taxes on developers’ earnings from sales to users in these local markets.

If Google or its payment processor partners deduct withholding tax (WHT) from Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via direct carrier billing (DCB), will the withholding tax show up as a line item on my reporting? Where can I see it?

Yes, the WHT will show up as a line item on the developer’s earnings report. The WHT will be shown as:

  • Direct carrier billing (DCB) transactions in Egypt (EG), Kuwait (KW), Myanmar (MM) and Sri Lanka (LK): “Direct Carrier Billing Withholding Tax” 
  • All form of payment transactions in BR: “BRAZIL_IRRF" and "BRAZIL_CIDE"
  • All form of payment transactions in TW: "TAIWAN_WITHHOLDING_TAX_2017_2019," "TAIWAN_WITHHOLDING_TAX_2020," and "TAIWAN_WITHHOLDING_TAX"
If Google or its payment processor partners deduct withholding tax (WHT) from Google Play Store app and in-app purchases made via direct carrier billing (DCB), will I owe Google back taxes for the amount Google covered historically?

No.

Can I opt out of having taxes withheld?

No. These taxes arise on your income from sales to users in this country or region.

Questions on US and Singapore certifications in section 3.6 of the DDA

Does the Play Developer Distribution Agreement (DDA) prohibit a developer from releasing, distributing or selling an app to the US and/or Singapore markets?

No. Section 3.6 of the DDA does not prohibit selling to these markets regardless of where a developer is located or tax resident.

Does this change to the DDA require me to notify Google if I plan to release a new game or app in the US or Singapore?

No. Section 3.6 of the DDA does not require notification because you want to release a new game or app in the US and/or Singapore markets.

Does this change to the DDA require me to notify Google for an existing game or app?

Generally, no, unless your game or app offers an in-app subscription and you support/maintain the subscription content from within the US or Singapore and are not a tax resident of the country from which you provide the services (e.g., you or your employees are physically present in the US or Singapore and perform the activities to maintain/support the subscription content in one of those countries).

What is meant by services?

Services do not generally refer to merely the sale of an app or game. Services also generally do not mean the sale of an in-app product unless the in-app product is subscription based. The revenue paid to developers for in-app subscriptions may be considered service income. 

Examples of performing services include the acts you perform to update or maintain content with respect to a subscription offering. It may also include any customer support you provide with respect to updating or maintaining subscription content. Services generally do not include the work in developing, building, selling, marketing or supporting a game or app except as it relates to subscription content offered within the game or app.

What is meant by performing services in one of the designated locations?

This component of the DDA only pertains to the location of your Play Developer Account Entity activities in maintaining subscriptions sold through Google Play. This does not include the work performed by a US or Singapore affiliate entity if they are not a party to the DDA.

I meet the conditions (or am unsure if I meet the conditions) to provide notice to Google.  How should I notify Google, and what information should I include?

Please email play-tax-notices@google.com and include the following information:
1. Name of individual or business entity on the Google Play developer account
2. Your country of tax residence
3. Reason for notification:

a. Performing service in the US but are resident outside the US
b. Performing services in Singapore but are resident outside Singapore
c. Performing services in the US and Singapore but are resident outside both countries
d. Other - please explain why you are sending a notification or why you think a notification may be required.

4. Play Developer account information:

a. Name
b. Profile ID

India-specific questions

What is a PAN?

A permanent account number (PAN) is a ten-character alphanumeric identifier, issued by the Indian Income Tax Department. It's considered as the tax identification number for income/direct tax purposes.

Why is the name mentioned on the withholding tax/Form 16A different from the name I provided to Google?

Please note that the name on the withholding tax certificate/Form 16A is based on the name belonging to the PAN that you have provided Google, as is available with the Indian Income tax department. Google cannot amend the name shown on the certificate, which is generated based on records of the Indian Income tax department.

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