Harvey dodges GST with direct-import site

Retail figurehead and Harvey Norman director Gerry Harvey has been a long-time opponent of foreign retailers shipping products to Australia, using the tactic to avoiding paying the local Goods and Services Tax (GST). Yesterday, he back flipped on the issue, announcing a new game-import website that will do exactly that.

Dubbed Harvey Norman Direct Import, the online store will operate out of the Republic of Ireland, and will ship games to Australia. At launch, the website will only stock interactive entertainment, but, in a conference call, Gerry Harvey hinted that video games are just the beginning, with plans to expand into other goods. He said, "we have to start somewhere, and it's a nice place to start".

The Australian retailer blamed consumer demand for cheaper products as the reason for its change of heart, citing the high wholesale price of local games as forcing its hand to compete with overseas sellers.

In response to a question about Harvey Norman Direct Import's ability to compete with existing online game retailers, Harvey Norman spokesperson Ben Mackintosh said that the site plans to "bring legitimacy to [grey import]".

Harvey Norman Direct is live now.

Via GameSpot AU

Via GameSpot AU

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MathewS posted a comment   

This makes no difference, Gerry Harvey can use an overseas retail outlet to skip the GST, but at the end of the day he is still way too dear!

Gerry is talking about importing games into Oz and says that he can sell a $100 game for between $60 - $70. For starters the $30 - $40 price difference does not add up to the 10% GST, so how does that work. Secondly, I can still get the game myself cheaper than that. Take BF3 for example, that game was retailing for $100 in Oz, but I managed to get it through an eBay seller based in Adelaide for $54 including delivery.

Gerry is an absolute toss! If he thinks we are stupid enough to buy into his little political games then he has another thing coming. Especially when his mates in the Liberal Party were the ones that brought GST into the Australian economy in the first place.


iva biggun posted a comment   

Is Gerry turning into the new Kogan.This news is very ironic.This is the beginning of the end for all his stores.

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