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Written by:
Marcel Frazer


Denial of application of zero rate for turnover tax

The supply of commodities whose supply involves them being shipped from one EU Member State to another comes under the zero rate for turnover tax. The application of said zero rate is contingent on the corresponding EU Member State levying turnover tax in connection with the intra-Community acquisition of the relevant commodities. The application of the zero rate is required to be evidenced by the accounts and records maintained by the owner of the business which has applied the zero rate, which is another way of saying that the onus of proof regarding the use of the zero rate rests with the business owner in question. There are no particular requirements where the provision of evidence is concerned: it is neither obligatory for the recipient of the commodities in question to report the intra-Community supply nor for the supplier to list its intra-Community transactions, for example. 

According to the Amsterdam Court of Appeal a particular business owner had failed to meet the burden of proof where his application of the zero rate for turnover tax had been concerned: according to the Court, an invoice featuring the value-added tax code of a business owner based in a different EU Member State and payment from that Member State were insufficient evidence of the commodities having been shipped to a different Member State, no proof having been submitted of the commodities having actually been transported while the conditions for classifying the supply as a “collect transaction” had not been satisfied either.

Dutch version: Nultarief omzetbelasting niet van toepassing


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