Thursday, March 29, 2007

Romania to reintroduce import VAT at customs for non-EU countries

The Romanian government has decided to reintroduce import VAT at customs for imports from non-EU countries for a fixed period, government spokesperson Camelia Spataru announced on Wednesday.

The measure will come into force on April 15, 2007, and last until the end of 2008, Spataru said.

"The measure will not affect those importers who brought in significant imports and met the criteria to be granted a VAT-postponing certificate in 2006," she said.

The decision was made as the National Agency of Fiscal Administration found that fiscal evasion was on the increase since the country suspended import VAT for non-EU countries in January 2007.

According to a report issued by the Finance Ministry, 40 percent of the imports of vegetables, fruits and flowers from non-EU countries were not declared at customs.

The Romanian government will also require guarantee of import VAT at customs until a proof is presented that the goods were delivered to another EU country.

Spataru said the measure is being taken as "there is a risk that VAT-exempted goods supposed to be delivered to a EU country do not reach their destination but are placed on the black economy."

According to the Permanent Representation of Romania to the EU, 15 out of the 27 EU countries currently apply the system of import VAT at customs. Out of the ten countries that acceded to the EU in 2004, Estonia, the Czech Republic and Lithuania are currently applying the simplified payment system.

Hungary used the simplified VAT payment system at the accession date, but later suspended it for the same reasons Romania did.

Source: Xinhua

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