Belgium import VAT deferment

In principle, companies not ordinarily resident in Belgium that wish to import goods into Belgium must register as non-residents for VAT and pay Belgium import VAT at 21%.  They must also pay any applicable Belgian customs duties.

However, Belgium offers one of the most convenient import VAT deferment schemes of the European Union member states. It can be compared to the Dutch import VAT deferment regime.  This includes the effect ability to import without any cash payment of VAT.

Belgium VAT importing warehouse scheme

In September 2012, Belgium withdrew the requirement for non-resident importers to make bank guarantees to cover the VAT deferment.  This guarantee or cash deposit had been worth several months’ worth of Belgian VAT on the estimated turnover of the imports.

This requirement was withdrawn from the start of October 2012 for new importers.  Existing importers had their guarantees cancelled in 2013.

Fiscal Representative to simplify imports

In addition to the bank guarantee changes, Belgian importers can also instead appoint a local firm of accountants or lawyers to serve as their fiscal representative and importer of record.

This eliminates the need for them to VAT register their businesses.

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