VAT in the Digital Age: Single VAT ID Registration Roundtable
Press release - Taxation
2 June 2022
Ecommerce Europe and EuroCommerce jointly held a hybrid roundtable in Brussels yesterday to discuss the upcoming ‘VAT in the Digital Age’ proposal and focus on the Single VAT Registration.
After the introduction of new VAT rules for e-commerce sales to consumers, the VAT One Stop Shop (OSS) has been extended to e-commerce distance selling. Both Ecommerce Europe and EuroCommerce warmly welcomed the introduction of these simplification measures. However, they also highlighted the fact that the new rules still do not address the issue of VAT registration for sellers holding stock in multiple Member States to be as close as possible to the consumers. This means that e-merchants must maintain their foreign VAT registrations in every EU country where they are sending or holding stock.
The Roundtable brought together policymakers, industry stakeholders and VAT experts to discuss the technicalities and benefits of extending the existing VAT OSS to all shipments of merchandise where the seller of record is not located in the EU country of taxation. In view of the upcoming publication of the ‘VAT in the Digital Age’ proposal foreseen for October 2022, Ecommerce Europe and EuroCommerce ask to extend the VAT One Stop Shop to include:
- cross-border movement of own inventory across the EU and
- domestic sales from distribution hubs by a seller that is not established in that EU country.
Luca Cassetti, Secretary General of Ecommerce Europe, commented: “The One Stop Shopis undoubtfully a success story in the simplification of EU VAT legislation and a great achievement to ensure a level playing field between EU and non-EU sellers. However, the OSS still needs to include movement of own goods and onward B2C and B2B sales. This is because businesses with multiple warehouses in EU countries still have to VAT-register in each country of storage, a burdensome requirement. With today’s event, we’ve made it clear that the solution is out there, and the Commission is determined to make it happen, to the benefit of European businesses, consumers, tax administrations, customs authorities, and ultimately the environment too.”
Christel Delberghe, Director General of EuroCommerce, commented: “Last year’s VAT e-commerce package has facilitated VAT compliance in the EU, but VAT legislation is still one of the main barriers which often prevents retailers and wholesalers to trade cross-border, in particular SMEs. VAT registration in different Member States is time-consuming and costly with companies spending around 8,000 euros on compliance costs per year and country. The Commission ‘VAT in the Digital Age’ initiative is a welcomed opportunity to facilitate trade within the EU by making VAT compliance simpler, fairer and more efficient.”
Ahead of the Roundtable, Ecommerce Europe and EuroCommerce have jointly launched a campaign with a website an informative video and communication tools to raise awareness of the benefits of a Single VAT ID in Europe.