The Italian Parliament passed the 2015 Finance Law on 22 December, which applies the 4% VAT rate to e-books as of 1 January 2015. According to the legislation any publication that is identified by an ISBN code (International Standard Book Number) and transmitted through any physical or electronic means, should be considered as a book and as a result subject to the 4% reduced VAT rate.
The Czech Republic is going to introduce a new VAT rate into its VAT legislation with effect from 1 January 2015.
On 6 November, the president of the Czech Republic signed the amendment to the current VAT law introducing a VAT rate of 10% from 1 January 2015. As a result of this, the Czech VAT law will have two reduced VAT rates.
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As indicated at our recent B2C 2015 work group event in Brussels PwC recently conducted a “2015 Impact and Readiness Survey” for which we invited businesses from across all sectors (telecom, broadcasting and eservice providers) and all geographical regions.We launched this survey with the aim of gathering data on the impact of the EU 2015 VAT changes on affected businesses. The survey also testes how ready businesses feel to be able to deal with the imminent changes.
The French tax authorities together with the Enterprise Europe Network Paris Ile-de-France Centre and the European Commission will held a free of charge conference in Paris on 3 November 2014 to provide guidance on the new EU rules which will apply from 1 January 2015 regarding the B2C supply of telecommunication services, television and radio broadcasting, and electronically supplied services.
In a recent decision issued for an online Bitcoin trading platform, the Belgian tax authorities have confirmed that the trading of Bitcoins and other virtual currencies is similar to the activity of an intermediary negotiating in securities and other negotiable instruments and, as a consequence, is exempt from VAT under the Belgian VAT code provision implementing Article 135(1)(d) of the EU VAT Directive. As a result, the activities should be treated as exempt from VAT and Bitcoin and alike trading platforms should not charge VAT to their customers with respect to their exchange services. On the other hand, those platforms have no right to deduct the input VAT paid in relation to their exchange activity.
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The Advocate General (AG) released her opinion in the interesting VAT case dealing with the situation whether a foreign company can be regarded as having a fixed establishment in the supplier’s Member State by using the supplier’s infrastructure.
As previously reported here, the implementation of South African VAT on electronic services and associated obligation for non-resident businesses to register for VAT purposes in South Africa, has been delayed by 2 months and will be effective as of 1 June 2014.
PwC’s Indirect Tax Webcast series continues with a follow-up session of the latest developments in the South African legislation.
The presenter will be again Gerard Soverall, Tax Partner of PwC South Africa, who is specialised in e-commerce and cross-border indirect taxation.
On 4 April, the European Commission has published Explanatory Notes to prepare businesses for the new VAT rules for telecom, broadcasting and electronic services, which will enter into force on 1 January 2015.
The aim is to help businesses to be fully prepared on time for the change-over, whereby VAT on telecom, broadcasting and electronic services will be charged where the customer is based, rather than where the seller is.
The Explanatory Notes are available on the EU Commission’s website in English (click link). (It will later be translated in all EU languages, as well as in Chinese and Japanese.)
We will discuss the key provisions and critical issues of the EU Commission’s Explanatory Notes with businesses, delegates of the Member States and the Commission during our next B2C 2015 Working Group meeting in Brussels, on 23 April 2014.
On 28 March the South African National Treasury published its “Electronic Services Regulations” in the Government Gazette and released a media statement, announcing a postponement of the effective date till June 1st, 2014.
The changes will make it compulsory for foreign e-commerce suppliers of electronic books, music and other digital services to register for VAT in South Africa.
As previously reported here, South Africa intends to impose VAT on electronic / digital services (“eservices”) supplied by non-established businesses to recipients in South Africa with effect from 1 April 2014.
At PwC’s upcoming Webcast Gerard Soverall (Partner, PwC South Africa), specialized in e-commerce and cross-boarder Indirect Taxation will provide an update on the latest developments. This session is designed to inform the participants of the content of the regulations and to discuss the administrative and enforcement challenges that may arise.