All posts by Sophie Claessens

About Sophie Claessens

Senior Tax Manager PricewaterhouseCoopers Tax Consultants Belgium email: sophie.claessens@be.pwc.com Mobile: +32 473 91 05 67 Office: +32 3 259 3169

Sophie Claessens is an international VAT advisor, based in Antwerp, Belgium, with a particular focus on business-to-consumer industries, including telecommunications, media, internet and e-commerce. She supports major industry players on sector-specific issues, including VAT compliance at both an operations and strategic level, and is directly involved in policy work for businesses in these industries, both at the Belgian level and at the level of the European Commission. She is responsible for indirect taxes in the communications sector at PwC Belgium and is a driver of PwC's Business Working Group on the EU 2015 VAT changes. She has authored articles for publication in Belgian and international tax journals.

EU: Travel agents can apply TOMS to all their travel sales

The special VAT regime (taxation of the margin) that applies to travel agents and to tour operators (incl. of on-line travel agencies) – the TOMS – has just recently been commented on in detail in eight judgments handed down by the Court of Justice of the European Union. The eight decisions all relate to the issue of whether the special VAT regime must only apply in a transaction between a travel agent and a “traveler” or whether the regime must apply to any transaction falling within the scope of that scheme between a travel agent and any client. One of the decisions involving Spain also dealt with a few separate issues – mostly specific to Spain – apart from the calculation of the margin itself.

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France: Compulsory electronic submission of accounting entry journal as from 1 Jan 2014

As from 1 January 2014, companies doing business in France, will be faced with a new obligation, the compulsory electronic submission of the accounting entry journal, so called “FEC” (“Fichier des écritures comptables”).

This obligation is applicable in case of tax audits as from 1st Jan 2014 with a back-dated effect to Fiscal Years 2011/2012/2013.

The e-file must include all the lines of accounting entries: no centralised/no aggregated entries. Find out more

EU: Finalised version of 2015 VAT Implementing Regulation is now been published on the Council’s website

The Implementing Regulation on the B2C 2015 place of supply changes, which was adopted last June, has now been published on the Council’s website. It amends/complements VAT Implementing Regulation 282/2011 on the place of supply of services. The regulated provisions concerning the B2C 2015 VAT changes have effect as from 1 January 2015.

You will find the regulation in English (here), in German (here) and in French (here). It is also available in many other official languages of the European Union.

For more information, we refer to our previous post here.

South Africa: Update on taxation of eservices

Further to our previous blog post, the South African Revenue Service (“SARS”) is planning to implement new VAT legislation which targets eservices provided by foreign (non-established) businesses to customers located in South Africa.

We have mentioned that at the end of August PwC South Africa was going to have a meeting with SARS and the National Treasury on this topic, in respect of which we are now pleased to provide you with an update. All parties agreed at the meeting that there are a number of issues that need to be addressed in respect of the proposed amendments. Nevertheless, there was consensus that the amendments need to proceed as a matter of priority, to ensure that there is no loss of tax revenue on these types of supplies, particularly as this is an area where trade is growing.

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Next meeting of PwC’s B2C 2015 working Group: 5 September 2013

Date: Thursday, 5 September 2013

Timing: 9.30 – 16.30 CET

Location: Brussels (address)

With the 2015 VAT Implementing Regulation now being adopted, which rounded the EU legislative framework, businesses that will be affected by the changes in legislation should now have a clearer picture of their 2015 footprint and the critical issues they need to address in the run-up to 2015.

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EU: B2C 2015 VAT Changes – Implementing Regulation adopted in Ecofin last Friday

We are happy to announce that the EU Ecofin Council reached political agreement on the proposal for VAT implementing Regulation on B2C 2015 place of supply issues, in a meeting in Luxembourg last Friday 21 June.

It will apply as from 1 January 2015. It will be officially released in the next weeks after clean up and translation to the EU official languages.

Important to note is that this Implementing Regulation has direct effect and does not need to be implemented/transposed by the EU Member States in their national VAT legislation (primary, secondary or administrative guidance).

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EU: Results of public consultation on the review of the existing legislation on VAT reduced rates published

The results of the public consultation on the review of the existing legislation on VAT reduced rates are now available online.

A total of 333 contributions were received and the greatest number of submissions originated from Belgium (76), followed by those from Germany (65), France (52) and the United Kingdom (48).

The EU Commission’s summary report as well as an index and the individual contributions can be consulted via this TAXUD page (click-through to CIRCABC). Find out more

France: Towards a super reduced VAT rate for digital press publications

According to a recently published press release, France is considering to apply a super reduced VAT rate for online press publications (2,1% instead of 19,6%) and this without the approval of Brussels.

As reported in previous posts, France and Luxembourg already started on 1 January 2012 to apply (super) reduced VAT rates for e-books (5,5% in France and 3% in Luxembourg) making them the cheapest countries to sell e-books in the whole EU.

The EU Commission saw this as an infringement against the EU VAT Directive and initiated infringement proceedings against both France and Luxembourg (Case No 2012/4080).

With this new proposal to Find out more

EU: B2C 2015 VAT changes – New proposal for an Implementing Regulation

On 18 December 2012, the Commission adopted the proposal for a Council Regulation amending the VAT Implementing Regulation (EU) No 282/2011 as regards the place of supply of services. It is the final proposal in a package of measures in view of the implementation of the new VAT taxation rules for B2C telecommunications, broadcasting and electronic services that will become effective as of 1st January 2015.

The proposed implementing measures relate to the identification and evidence of customer location and are needed to ensure a uniform application within the EU. It also includes a proposed deemed provision in case of intermediated delivery of electronic services.

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