export and VAT to france

Question posted by Stephane flerin, on behalf of ledprod in W5

hi. I am new in this industry. I want to export some goods to France but I dont know how and when to had the VAT to the professional

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Hi Stefane,

The treatment of VAT within the EU depends on whether your business is VAT registered, and also whether your client is VAT registered in France.

If you are both VAT registered in your respective countries, you should obtain your client's VAT registration number, and quote it on your sales invoice. You then do not have to charge VAT on your sales price. He will declare the transaction in France & pay VAT at the French rate to his authorities. You should then declare the transaction on your VAT return, and on an ESL (EC Sales List).
If your client is not VAT registered, and cannot prove that they are a commercial business, you should charge them UK VAT, and declare it in your VAT return.

If you are not VAT registered, you would not charge VAT anyway, but if you are thinking of doing more exports, you might want to consider registering for VAT.

If you are supplying goods, rather than services you may also need to declare all EU transactions to HMRC, using a procedure called Intrastat. For details of both, go to the HMRC website.

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Dear Stephane
Thats good advice from Mike.
when you require help in the movement of your products to France
please give us a call on 01263 513127 or email us on ; colin.crown@ntlworld.com
and we will try our best to help.
Best regards
Colin ; Crown Freight ltd

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I have this information from a French contact in France (with many years of importing experience):

The exporter invoices without VAT, either FOB (Free On Board), or CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight). The importer adds the taxes that are then recovered by the state, either monthly or quarterly, depending on the volume of business.

Hope this is of help.

Caroline Hirst

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Kenny McQuarrie, on behalf of Yell in RG1.

Hi Stephane,

Following on from the above responses, you might find the following articles helpful:


Kind regards,

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HI, contact your local International Trade Adviser (ITA) in your area and they can come out and talk you through this. UKTI ITA services are free and we may even have some export programmes you could be eliglible for and possibly funding also. http://www.ukti.gov.uk/export.html - put your postcode in the box to find the contact details of your local ITA. Good Luck

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