These are difficult times. Global markets are currently struggling with unprecedented changes to activity across many sectors, along with soaring numbers of employees quarantining or incapacitated through illness. Individuals are getting to grips with quarantine, isolation and distancing from loved ones. At the same time, companies that trade cross-border are trying to maintain business as usual and keep employees motivated while practically the entire continent finds itself working from home.
To help keep trade flowing and to relieve some of the pressures on businesses, many Tax Authorities across Europe are making significant changes to their office hours and meeting procedures, penalty and interest timelines, and VAT reporting and payment schedules.
Although in principle these changes should ease the immediate burden, those who trade in multiple territories will need to keep abreast of each country’s differing assistance measures. It is also crucial for businesses to understand that a prerequisite for many of these assistance measures, including VAT payment deferrals, is that companies continue to file their VAT returns on time. Therefore, businesses should still be preparing their data and submitting in the usual way.
There is potential for confusion, and that’s why we are launching a European Tax Authority Tracker, available free of charge to help businesses navigate the daily changes to international VAT panorama. We know we can add value by sharing our knowledge of and proximity to EU Tax Authorities to assist other businesses in this complicated moment. Our updates tracker collates, synthesises and decodes Tax Authority changes for the wider business community – as they could have a significant impact on business planning and immediate cash flow.
The tracker harnesses the decades of experience of our VAT Consultants, the many talents of our multilingual staff and our long history of working closely with European Tax Authorities. Specifically, the updates will include information on how the changes will affect certain sectors, and any exemptions which businesses must be aware of. They will also offer guidance on how best to prepare and to mitigate the impact of changes.
Fundamentally, we believe that whilst governments and health professionals work tirelessly to keep us safe, businesses across the continent must play their part in safeguarding the future of the economy and protecting jobs.
Europe may now be at home – but it’s still working.