Fabian Demicoli

Member states lose money on incorrect import VAT

 European Court of Auditors reports says that incorrect levels of VAT are paid on goods imported into the EU. The European Court of Auditors (ECA) said that member states are failing to ensure that the correct level of value-added tax (VAT) is being paid on goods imported into the EU and transported across borders inside the Union. A special report released by the ECA on 13 December has looked into a customs procedure – number 42 – that is used to provide importers an exemption from VAT on goods that are being sold in another EU member state.

The report says that controls in member states on ensuring that VAT was paid were deficient and that member states did not ensure that the conditions for exemption were being met.

The ECA carried out an audit in seven member states where goods were being imported and asked 21 member states that were the destination of goods to make sample checks of whether VAT was being paid.

Significant losses

The report says that the incorrect application of the procedure has led to "significant losses to national budgets". It says that the losses, extrapolated from the samples, was €2.2 billion in 2009. This represents 29% of all the VAT payable in imports made under the customs procedure in 2009, the ECA says. 

The report says that member states have made some improvements to their controls but that more work is needed. It said that information about transactions using the procedure was not always given to tax authorities in the destination member states.

The ECA recommends include making importers liable for VAT losses in cases where the VAT statement is not submitted, creating a common risk profile for imports using procedure 42, and changing legislation to improve the exchange of information with authorities in the destination member state.

 

 

What we can do for you

INFORMATION POINT

BUSINESS SERVICES

MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS

LOCAL ISSUES & LEGISLATION

B2B NETWORKING EVENTS

LEGAL ADVICE

FUNDING ASSISTANCE

COURSES

BECOME A MEMBER

The Malta Chamber of SMEs represents over 7,000 members from over 90 different sectors which in their majority are either small or medium sized companies, and such issues like the one we're experiencing right now, it's important to be united. Malta Chamber of SMEs offers a number of different services tailored to its members' individual requirements' and necessities. These range from general services offered to all members to more individual & bespoke services catered for specific requirements.

A membership with Malta Chamber of SMEs will guarantee that you are constantly updated and informed with different opportunities which will directly benefit your business and help you grow. It also entails you to a number of services which in their majority are free of charge and offered exclusively to its members (in their majority all free of charge).