Global Indirect Tax News


Global Indirect Tax News

Monthly newsletter covering VAT, goods and services tax, sales tax issues, and customs and trade issues around the globe.

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March 2017

World Trade Organization

  • On 22 February 2017, the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement entered into force, following ratification by 112 national parliaments out of a total 164 WTO members.


  • Colombia: The recent tax reform includes a number of indirect taxes changes.
  • Colombia: There is a new regulation with modifications to the rules for Free Trade Zones.
  • Colombia: A decree has been issued implementing the new harmonized coding system of merchandise.
  • Mexico: The Government has started the consultation process with the private sector prior to the negotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.
  • Mexico: The import duty rates for electric vehicles have been modified.
  • Mexico-Argentina: Ministers from Mexico and Argentina have met to review work on the Economic Complementation Agreement No. 6.
  • Mexico-EU: A delegation of European Union parliamentarians has met the Mexican Minister of Economy.

Asia Pacific

  • Australia: From 1 July 2017, Australia is adopting a vendor GST registration and collection model to ensure that low value goods imported by consumers face the same GST treatment as goods sourced domestically.
  • China: New VAT rules regarding the asset management industry have been postponed to 1 July 2017.
  • India: There is a summary of the highlights of GST Council meetings held/to be held in March 2017.
  • India: The Central Board of Excise and Customs has issued a circular to clarify the levy of service tax on services by way of transportation of goods by a vessel from a place outside India to a customs station in India with respect to goods intended for transshipment to any country outside India.
  • India: The exemption for services provided 'to’ an educational institution has been restricted to certain specified institutions.
  • Indonesia: Import duty tariffs have increased for 300 tariff lines.
  • Indonesia: A new regulation on the import of postal goods is advantageous for e-commerce.
  • Indonesia: To simplify the procedure and streamline the acquisition of business licenses, the Indonesian Customs Authority and the Directorate General of Tax have established a single identity number program.
  • Indonesia: There is a new procedure for determing the classification of import goods prior to the submission of the customs declaration.
  • Malaysia: The transfer of business as going concern and tax invoice and records keeping guides have been updated.
  • Malaysia: There have been amendments to GST orders relating to exempt supplies and zero-rating.
  • Malaysia: The question of whether a branch is a separate entity from the overseas headquarters for GST purposes is considered.
  • Malaysia: Deloitte Malaysia offers Customized GST training.


  • EU-Mexico: A delegation of European Union parliamentarians has met the Mexican Minister of Economy.
  • Belgium: A Royal Decree regarding the repeal of the prepayment requirement for quarterly VAT taxpayers was published on 23 February 2017 and will be effective as of 1 April 2017.
  • Finland: A recent ruling by the Supreme Administrative Court has significantly changed the VAT treatment of indemnities, in addition, there are upcoming changes to the VAT treatment of booking fees.
  • Finland: The SAC has given two rulings that restrict the right of VAT deduction.
  • Israel: There has been an extension to the requirement to disclose a position contradicting the tax authorities' published position.
  • Italy: There is a ministerial decree and tax authorities' guidance on the changes to the VAT warehouse regime.
  • Italy: The Milleproroghe decree has been approved and converted into law, including VAT amendments regarding Intrastat obligations and the quarterly communication of invoices and customs bills.
  • Italy: The deadlines for the optional e-communication of invoices and customs bills have been aligned to the deadlines for the mandatory e-communication of invoices and customs bills.
  • Italy: The form for the quarterly communication of VAT calculation data has been approved.
  • Italy: The tax authorities and the customs authorities have issued a press release on Intrastat reporting obligations.
  • Italy: Updated clarifications have been issued regarding the application of the Union Customs Code.
  • Poland: The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that e-books do not qualify for the lower VAT rate.
  • Portugal: The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that VIES is not critical to intra-Community dispatch accounting.
  • Portugal: A ruling has been issued on the application of the VAT exemption for supplies of dental prostheses.
  • Portugal: A new system will apply with respect to the application of the VAT exemption for the export of goods by non-EU residents.
  • Portugal: There has been an Arbitration Court decision regarding the application of the waiver of the VAT exemption applicable to private clinics and private practitioners
  • Portugal: There have been amendments to the rules regarding the tax contribution for light plastic bags.
  • Russia: The Ministry of Finance has clarified foreign e-service providers' VAT liabilities.
  • Russia: It has been reported that a Draft Law has been submitted on amending the application of VAT to export operations.
  • Russia: The Government is considering zero-rating VAT on the re-export of processed products.
  • Russia: There is the prospect of an initiative to reduce social contributions and to increase the standard VAT rate.
  • Russia: There are proposals to streamline alcohol excise duties.
  • Russia: The export of tanning semi-finished products has been prohibited.
  • South Africa: A reduction has been proposed in the rate for the planned tax on sugary beverages.
  • Sweden: The Government has decided not to proceed with a proposed financial activity tax.
  • Ukraine: There has been clarification of the requirements for movement certificate EUR.1.
  • Ukraine: Anti-dumping duties on Russian fertilizers have been suspended to 1 July 2017.
  • United Kingdom: The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that the VAT ‘cultural exemption’ is not directly effective.
  • United Kingdom: The Office of Tax Simplification has published its interim report on VAT simplification.
  • United Kingdom: The Spring Budget 2017 was delivered on 8 March 2017, including a number of indirect tax measures.
  • Eurasian Economic Union: Preliminary information will be required for goods imported via air transport.
  • Eurasian Economic Union: There has been an extension to the pilot project on the marking of fur goods.
  • Eurasian Economic Union: A Technical Regulation has been introduced with respect to mineral fertilizers.
  • Eurasian Economic Union: The import customs duty rates of certain goods have been amended.

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