If there is one facet of life that all of us cannot escape from, it would be the fact that if you work, you have to pay taxes. So the question s, if a robot were eventually to take over a job that you’re doing, like in a manufacturing facility, does the robot have to pay taxes too? Bill Gates certainly seems to think so.
During an interview with Quartz’s editor-in-chief Kevin Delaney, Gates was quoted as saying, “Right now, the human worker who does, say, $50,000 worth of work in a factory, that income is taxed and you get income tax, Social Security tax, all those things. If a robot comes in to do the same thing, you’d think that we’d tax the robot at a similar level.”
Of course since robots can’t actually pay taxes, Gates suggests that maybe the money companies save from using robots in place of humans should be paid as some form of income tax. According to Gates, “But you can’t just give up that income tax, because that’s part of how you’ve been funding that level of human workers.”
Whether or not this is something that governments will take into consideration in the future remains to be seen, but we guess companies might not be too pleased if this were to happen. After all the point of robots is to reduce costs and to be more efficient, and if they had to pay for that (on top of purchasing the robots) it wouldn’t make sense anymore, or would it? What do you guys think? Should robots “pay” taxes?