France introduced the Standard Audit File for Tax (SAF-T) on 1 January 2014.
France’s version of SAF-T, Fichier des écritures comptables (FEC), is aligned to the national chart of accounts, the Plan Comptable General. It is therefore at variance with the global OECD standard, see below. At present French SAF-T is only a required on-demand by the tax authorities, usually prior to a VAT audit by the French Tax authorities.
The required format is .txt.
SAF-T is an electronic schema developed for the efficient exchange of information between the tax authorities and businesses. It was created by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in 2005 as a standard to be used globally to ensure consistency from country-to-country to facilitate exchange of data between tax authorities. The file requirements are expressed using XML, although the EU does not specify the exact file format.
There are generally five reporting requirements:
- 1.General ledger and supporting journals
- 2. Accounts payable, including supplier master data and invoices
- 3. Accounts Receivable, with customer master data and invoices
- 4. Warehouse inventories, and master data
- 5. Fixed assets ledger, including amortisation