With more businesses expanding their consumer base via the internet, sales with international delivery is on the increase. Where the consumer is based outside of the EU, businesses sell on an export basis, with the recipient responsible for any customs clearance in their own country. However, this shift of responsibility of local taxes to the recipient is not available when trading to private individuals within the EU. For occasional sales to private consumers in another EU Member State, a company’s own domestic VAT is charged, but if these sales to a particular country exceeds a set threshold, the supplier is obliged to register for VAT in the country of the recipient and account for local VAT of that country on the sale.
VAT registrations under Distance Selling arrangements differ from a standard registration, and the thresholds for a registration should not be confused with thresholds for normal trading activities. In addition to a different registration procedure, the transactions that need to be reported, and corresponding Intrastat obligations can also differ.
The current distance selling thresholds within the EU are: