Contributions and Interviews

New rules concerning VAT for e-commerce

08. 07. 2021

mag. Janja Ovsenik

mag. Janja Ovsenik


As of July 1, 2021 new rules on e-commerce apply. The VAT e-commerce package consists of Council Directive (EU) 2017/2455, Council Regulation (EU) 2017/2454 and Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2017/2459. Furthermore, implementing measures are contained in Council Directive (EU) 2019/1995 and Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/2026.

Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union issued Explanatory notes on VAT e-commerce rules which are available here.

On account of practical difficulties originated by the actions taken to limit the Coronavirus pandemic, the application of the new VAT e-commerce rules was postponed by six months. Consequently, the rules will apply as of July 1, 2021, instead of January 1, 2021. This deferral gave the Member States and private businesses additional time to prepare for four main changes that the new rules bring:

Firstly, Online marketplaces or platforms that function as intermediaries between companies and customers will, in certain situations, be deemed for VAT purposes to be the supplier of goods sold to customers in the EU by companies using the platform. Accordingly, they will be responsible for collecting and paying the VAT on these sales.

Additionally, a mini One-Stop Shop (MOSS) will be turned into the One Stop Shop (OSS), whereby it will include a wider scope of services, unlike the current system which only includes Telecommunications, broadcasting and electronic ones. The expansion is meant to lead to a simplified and more efficient VAT reporting on the sale of goods and services to final consumers from other EU and non-EU countries. Under the new VAT rules, taxable persons will be able to settle the obligations of several EU countries in one Member State.

Moreover, the current VAT exemption for the importation of small consignments lower or equal to EUR 22 will be abolished and a new special scheme for distance sales of goods imported from third territories or third countries of an intrinsic value not exceeding EUR 150 will be created. This arrangement will be done under a system called Import One Stop Shop (IOSS).

Lastly, special arrangements for distance sales of imported goods in consignments not exceeding EUR 150 will be introduced, in case the IOSS arrangement is not used.

In conclusion, all Member States are expected to legislate new rules from European Commission Directives. In Slovenia, a draft law concerning amendments to the Value Added Tax Act (ZDDV-1) regarding distance supplies of goods is still at first reading in the parliament. Nevertheless, the Slovenian tax authorities confirmed that the portal will be functional on July 1, 2021, even if the VAT amendments aren’t adopted by then. It’s possible to register for the MOSS system that will be expanded to OSS here.

Law Firm Senica is available for assistance with any questions you may have concerning the new VAT rules.

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