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European VAT News

European VAT News – July 2019

By July 23, 2019July 10th, 2021No Comments

Austria plans to levy a 5% tax on digital advertising revenues as of 01.01.2020. This special tax would only affect companies with a global revenue in digital advertising of more than EUR 750m and a digital advertising revenue in Austria of more than EUR 25m…


Austria plans to levy a 5% tax on digital advertising revenues as of 01.01.2020. This special tax would only affect companies with a global revenue in digital advertising of more than EUR 750m and a digital advertising revenue in Austria of more than EUR 25m.

Furthermore, Austria has, once again, postponed the extension of the margin scheme on travel services for B2B transactions from 01.05.2019 to 01.05.2020. As a result, the EU-Commission has announced its intention to commence infringement proceedings against Austria.



Chile has dropped its plan to levy a digital tax of 10% on the online B2C services supplied by non-established companies. The tax was to have been levied on downloadable media and streaming content and was intended to have been withheld by credit card companies registered in Chile. Now, instead of this digital tax, the Chilean Minister of Finance has suggested taxing these types of services with the regular Chilean VAT rate of 19%. This would indicate that non-established providers of online services to Chilean customers now need to register for VAT purposes in Chile in order to be in a position to pay their taxes.


Czech Republic

As from 1 January 2020, financial lease contracts, under which it is agreed that at the end of the contract the right of ownership to the goods will be transferred to the leaseholder, will be treated as supplies of goods.



Ruling No. BOI-RES-000047-20190515 was published on 15 May 2019 and confirms that repair and maintenance operations on lifts or similar equipment designed for disable persons benefit from the reduced rate of 5.5%.



Greece plans to implement real time reporting and e-invoicing with effect as of January 2020. This will include the daily reporting of B2B and B2C invoices via the online portal TAXISnet of the Greek tax authorities.



VAT shown on purchase invoices, which a taxable person received prior to their registration date, may only be claimed in the first Hungarian VAT return filed. This new regulation came into effect on 01.01.2019. However, the input VAT must be claimed within the five-year limitation period – if necessary, by correcting the first VAT return.



Protocol No. 164664/2019 was issued on 30 May 2019 and amended Protocol No. 89757/2018 of 30 April 2018, which implemented the rules for electronic invoices.

Electronic invoices must be issued and received through the ITA SdI system and starting from 1 July 2019 qualifying taxable persons can consult and download issued and received electronic invoices upto 31 December of the second year following the receipt of the electronic invoice in the ITA SdI system, if they adhere to the service by 31 October 2019.

If a taxable person does not adhere to the service by that date, it will not be able to consult its electronic invoices, and related xml files will be deleted within 60 days.



As from 1 July 2019 VAT payers whose income from an economic activity in the previous calendar year did not exceed 300 000 EUR, may opt for a quarterly periodicity for the filing of their VAT returns.



On 6 June 2019, several amendments were introduced to the regulation of the refunds of the VAT paid regarding goods purchased in Malta by non-resident travellers where such goods are taken out from this country to a final destination outside the European Union.

Among others, it is now foreseen that:

  • “non-resident traveller” means a traveller whose domicile or habitual residence is not situated within the EU; and
  • The minimum limit for goods purchased from a single registered establishment as shown in a single receipt has been decreased from EUR 100 to EUR 50.



The Polish government has published a new draft law on the mandatory split payment system. It is proposed that the separate payment of invoices should be mandatory as of 01.09.2019. The tax amount due should be transferred by the performance recipient to a separate tax account of the performance provider. Foreign companies would be obliged to open a bank account in PLN with a bank established in Poland. However, the Polish tax authorities would, upon request, reimburse the costs associated with the establishment of such a bank account. The split payment requirement would primarily be applicable to transactions that are currently subject to reverse charge. A detailed list of the goods and services subject to the obligatory split payment can be found in the Annex to EU Implementing Regulation 2019/310. In addition, each transaction should exceed a gross amount of PLN 15,000. It will be mandatory to indicate the application of the split payment on the invoice (in Polish: “mechanizm podzielonej płatności”). If this reference is not included on the invoice or if the split payment regulation is not applied despite fulfilling the conditions, the Polish tax authorities may impose a penalty payment equivalent to the amount of the VAT due. However, no fines will be imposed in this regard until 01.01.2020. 

Furthermore, the new Standard Audit File Tax (SAF-T), which it is envisaged will replace the current VAT return and the additionally filed SAF_VAT, may not come into force for large companies until 01.01.2020. According to the new draft law, fewer boxes will have to be completed. Additionally, the new draft law will more precisely regulate in which cases fines may be imposed on the taxpayer for incorrectly created Standard Audit Files.



By 31.10.2019 all companies must be registered in the central register of beneficial owners. This obligation now also applies to companies only registered for VAT purposes in Portugal. As part of the registration process, provision of data relating to the identity of a company’s shareholders, its administrative bodies and its beneficial owners, as well as data relating to the person registering the company is required. The purpose behind this data request is to prevent terrorist financing and money laundering within the EU. Non-compliance may result in sanctions and fines of up to EUR 50,000 being imposed.     

Additionally, as of 01.01.2020 companies will be required to issue invoices using software certified by the Portuguese tax authorities. According to the latest available information, this obligation also applies to companies that are not established in Portugal but are registered for VAT purposes in Portugal and have a taxable (worldwide) annual turnover of more than EUR 75,000. The obligation to use certified invoicing software is only waived if the reverse charge scheme applies or if self-billing invoices are issued. Non-compliance may result in sanctions and fines of up to EUR 37,500 being imposed. (Please see above notes of our meeting with the Portuguese authorities for the latest position on time limits).



Law no. 60/2019 was published and amended Law no. 227/2015, regarding the VAT treatment of vouchers.



As of 01.01.2019 the reduced VAT rate of 10% became applicable to accommodation services in Slovakia. Accommodation services include standard hotel accommodation, as well as other accommodation services, e.g. those provided on camping sites.



Effective from 1 July 2019, the application of the 4% reduced VAT will be expanded to a wider range of bread types, i.e. those that are not made with wheat flour.

The remaining bread types will be taxed at a reduced VAT rate of 10%.



As from 1 July 2019, electronic publications (e-books, online publications and newspapers) will benefit from the reduced VAT rate of 6%.


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