A non-resident company making taxable supplies of goods and/or services in the Netherlands or Belgium need to register for VAT purposes. Think about releasing goods for free circulation and making subsequent supplies to customers abroad. As a consequence the non-resident company must submit periodic VAT returns.
Benefits of appointing a fiscal representative
A non-resident company, however, may decide to appoint a fiscal representative in relation to its VAT obligations. The fiscal representative takes care of submitting the VAT return, submitting the European Sales Listing as well as intrastate declarations if applicable. Besides those benefits, appointing a fiscal representative also creates the possibility to apply for a VAT deferment license. The Netherlands (Article 23) as well as Belgium (ET14000) have implemented a so-called VAT deferment system. No Import VAT has to be paid actually which results in a cash flow and interest benefit.
Types of fiscal representative
There are two types of fiscal representation: a fiscal representative with a general license and a fiscal representative with a limited license. Only Dutch or Belgium resident companies can be appointed as fiscal representative with either a general or limited license.
A fiscal representative with a general license acts on behalf of a non-resident company with respect to all its supplies of goods and services for which Dutch or Belgium VAT is due, intra-community acquisitions of goods and the import of goods.
A fiscal representative with a limited license can only act on behalf of a non-resident company for the import of goods and subsequent supplies of these goods.
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