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Outer space is in constant use. Most obviously, billions of ""packets"" of information travel through it every day, for the infinitely various purposes of countless people and organizations. Space platforms increasingly provide important research data for businesses, institutions, and governments. Taxation issues are inevitable. In fact, tax planners have for several years been engaged in designing tax incentives to enhance the development of space commerce. A significant focus of this book is an in-depth evaluation of the current US discussion of tax rules designed to stimulate space commerce in 2001.
The debate is placed squarely in its complete context of historic developments and constraints, prevailing tax law (in this case the US internal revenue code), and the body of international and national space law that began with the 1967 Space Treaty.; Comparative analysis is provided by examination of corresponding schemes evolving in Canada, Japan, Australia, and France. Specific events, developments, issues, and probabilities dealt with in The Taxation of Space Commerce include the following: the economic significance of the Challenger launch in 1986; the value of F.J. Turner's classic ""frontier"" thesis for understanding the ""new frontier"" of space; the Commercial Space Launch Act of 1984 (US); the role of the US internal revenue code's foreign tax credit; the 1979 Moon Treaty; remote-sensing and nuclear power; the 1998 Inter-Governmental Space Station Agreement; case law, especially Smith v. United States; multinational vs. unilateral taxation schemes; benefits of space commerce for society as a whole; and competitiveness and economic efficiency.
As a major contribution to the literature of space law and tax law, this text aims to fill an important need. Beyond that, it is a work which should be of value not only for taxation specialists and communications industry executives and their counsel, but for any enterprise with an eye to the not-too-distant future.