VAT Relief and Other Tax Issues
This is a list of resources, by country, with information on COVID-19 related tax changes. Where found, weblinks to a country’s information are included to provide information as up-to-date as possible. If you become aware of corrections needed or other information that should be listed, please send to Stephen Varley firstname.lastname@example.org.
Austria has implemented a VAT payment and penalty deferment application scheme for businesses directly affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. Monthly VAT payers may apply to their respective tax office for a postponement and instalment payment plan. This includes a waiver or renegotiation of penalty and interest payments on late settlement. If no permission is granted, businesses will be given one week’s extension automatically. https://www.bmf.gv.at/public/informationen/informationen-coronavirus.html
Belgium VAT filings may be delayed by two weeks and payments by two months because of coronavirus crisis concerns. https://financien.belgium.be/nl/coronavirus
Bonaire, St Eustatius, Saba https://www.belastingdienst-cn.nl/actueel/nieuws/2020/maart/25/belastingdienst-cn-met-bijzonder-uitstel-van-betaling
British Virgin Islands https://bvi.gov.vg/media-centre/update-economic-substance-during-covid-19-pandemi
Cayman Islands https://www.exploregov.ky/coronavirus
China has exempted VAT on medical services, lifestyle services (e.g. restaurants, hotels, education, tourism and entertainment, catering and accommodation services, sundry personal services, hairdressing and laundry, etc.), public transport and delivery services in respect of essential living necessities to the residents. There are also preferential VAT policies for companies manufacturing masks and protective gear. VAT has also been reduced from 3% to nil for small businesses in Hubei Province and 1% for small businesses in other parts of China, effective from 1 March 2020 until 31 May 2020. http://www.chinatax.gov.cn/eng/n4260854/c5146227/5146227/files/2c0c7d469b204eeeaae57d2bf27f5f36.pdf
Columbia will provide delayed VAT payment terms for the first semester of 2020.
Costa Rica has provided a 3-month VAT payment deferment for taxpayers from 15th March. Corporate income taxes and customs duties are also suspended. https://www.hacienda.go.cr/
Cyprus will temporarily cuts its VAT rate from 19% to 17% until May 2020. The rate on tourism will be reduced to 7.5% until July 2020.
Czech Republic limited VAT measures for businesses - tax payment delays will be offered, but are not automatic. No extensions for filing deadlines have been announced.
Denmark will temporarily postpone payment deadlines by one month of VAT for companies above DKK50 million turnover. The measure will apply for three months, starting March 2020 return - deadline now 25th May. https://www.skm.dk/aktuelt/nyheder/2020/marts/corona-virus-regeringen-ivaerksaetter-i-dag-en-raekke-initiativer-som-hjaelp-for-dansk-oekonomi
Dominican Republic https://dgii.gov.do/publicacionesOficiales/avisosInformativos/Paginas/default.aspx
Estonia Link to FAQs: https://www.rahandusministeerium.ee/et/koroonaviiruse-korduma-kippuvad-kusimused
Estonia Link to FAQs: https://www.emta.ee/eng/etcbs-information-emergency-situation
EU Commission has suggested countries provide VAT payment holidays and act in unison. It has also relaxed the state-aid rules, which would permit VAT measures benefiting only specific businesses or sectors.
Finland is to offer an application process for waiving late charges on Value Added Tax settlements. https://www.vero.fi/tietoa-verohallinnosta/uutishuone/korona/
Germany Tax authorities can grant delayed tax payment to taxpayers that are affected by Corona. Based on the current statement of the German Ministry of Finance the deferral will not exceed December 31, 2020. However, this period could be extended later. Against the general rules for tax payments in Germany, the taxpayer should not have to pay any additional interests for the period of deferral. German Ministry of Finance declared that enforcement measure (garnishment of bank accounts etc.) will not be made till the end of the year if the taxpayer is effected by Corona. https://www.bmwi.de/Redaktion/EN/Pressemitteilungen/2020/20200313-protective-shield-for-employees-and-companies.html
Greece has given a four-month extension to pay VAT that falls due at the end of March in the most affected regions.
Hong Kong https://www.budget.gov.hk/2020/eng/nt.html
India on 14 March has delayed the filings of GST filings for 2018/19 until 30 June 2020. It has also delayed the introduction of e-invoices until 1 October 2020. It has also postponed a GST rise on certain basics.
Italy has suspended payments for large businesses until later this month. Smaller enterprises are delayed longer till 30 Jun. Non-resident taxpayers must still meet 30 April filing deadline.
Ivory Coast http://www.gouv.ci/_grandossier.php?recordID=222
Jamaica plans to cut its General Consumption Tax from 16.5% to 15%.
Latvia link to Latvia website: https://fm.gov.lv/lv/covid_19/
Lithuania is announcing VAT payment deferment and penalty waiver. https://www.vmi.lt/cms/informacija-verslui-del-covid-19
Malaysia is considering reinstating the Goods and Services Tax, withdrawn in 2018 for sales and service taxes. Accommodation services have been exempted from service tax.
Netherlands taxpayers in difficulties because of the current crisis may apply for a VAT payment holiday. https://www.rijksoverheid.nl/onderwerpen/coronavirus-covid-19
New Zealand https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/121-billion-support-new-zealanders-and-business
Norway is to cut reduced 12% VAT rate to 8% on public transport, cinema, sporting and cultural events. https://www.regjeringen.no/no/tema/koronavirus/id2692388/
Poland has delayed the extension of SAF-T VAT reporting and introduced a VAT payment holiday. https://www.gov.pl/web/koronawirus
Puerto Rico http://www.hacienda.gobierno.pr/sobre-hacienda/publicaciones/area-de-rentas-internas-y-area-de-politica-contributiva/publicaciones-oficiales
Romania introduces accelerated VAT credits. https://www.mfinante.gov.ro/acasa.html?method=detalii&id=999646013
Russia Latest updates on COVID-19 in Russia and in regard to supporting measures for Russian population and business:
Saint Maarten http://www.sintmaartengov.org/Pages/default.aspx
Saudi Arabia http://www.sama.gov.sa/en-US/News/Pages/news-514.aspx
Singapore has deferred GST hike from 7% to 9% till after 2021. The hike was expected to be implemented in stages and be fully effected by year 2025. To address the economic uncertainties brought about by the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, a total of $5.6 billion has been set aside in Budget 2020 for the Stabilisation and Support Package and Care and Support Package. The $4 billion Stabilisation and Support Package aims to help workers stay employed through wage support and reskilling opportunities. It will also support firms with cash flow and operating costs. More help will be channeled towards five sectors affected by COVID-19 - tourism, aviation, retail, food services and point-to-point transport services. To help households weather through these uncertain times, a special $1.6 billion Care and Support Package will also provide timely help for Singaporeans, with the less well-off receiving more. WEBLINK https://www.gov.sg/article/cushioning-the-impact-of-covid-19
South Africa http://www.treasury.gov.za/public%20comments/DMTRB2020/
South Korea has cut VAT taxes for small businesses, given tax boosts for consumers replacing their cars early and provided tax deductions on personal credit card spend. http://www.korea.net/Government/Current-Affairs/National-Affairs?affairId=2034
Spain has closed its tax offices from 15 March for face-to-face meetings. There are suspensions of filing deadlines. It had previously announced VAT and other tax payment holidays for small businesses who apply for relief. The scheme is not available for large businesses (above €6m turnover) or if the VAT due is above €30m. https://www.mscbs.gob.es/profesionales/saludPublica/ccayes/alertasActual/nCov-China/home.htm
Sri Lanka http://www.ird.gov.lk/en/sitepages/News%20and%20Notices.aspx
Switzerland offers to suspend all federal tax payments and social security contributions interest-free until the end of the year (particularly federal income tax and VAT). https://www.admin.ch/gov/de/start.html
Taiwan extension of next two VAT filings for enterprises affected by COVID-19. The original VAT filing deadlines of March 15, May 15 are extended to March 31 and June 1, respectively. https://www.mof.gov.tw/eng
Thailand has exempted face masks from import VAT and reduced time waiting for VAT refunds to 15 days.
UK has announced on 11 March the opening of call centres to take requests for VAT and other tax payment delays from businesses which are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Ukraine Over the last few weeks there were numerous changes to Ukrainian legislation on tax matters connected to COVID-19 matters and effective in the last edition as of 02.04.2020. Please see a brief summary below
- No penalties for the violation of tax legislation for the period from March 01, 2020, until May 31, 2020. However, some exceptions should be considered. The main of them are violations against VAT, rental payment, excise tax, requirements of the legislation to operations with ethanol, fuel, alcohol, and tobacco, etc.;
- Non-application of the delay penalty from March 01, 2020, until May 31, 2020;
- Freezing of documentary and actual tax audits for the period from March 18 until May 31, 2020. However, some exceptions should be considered. For instance, the restriction does not extend to verifying the lawfulness of the VAT claimed for refunds or the negative value of the VAT and violations in operations with ethanol, fuel, alcohol, and tobacco;
- Documentary and actual tax audits had started before March 18, 2020, which have not been completed yet, suspended until May 31, 2020;
- The land fee (land tax and rent for state and communal property) for land owned or used, including on lease, shall not be charged or paid for the period from March 1 to March 31, 2020, natural or legal persons, and used by them in business activities;
- The tax on immovable property other than land plots shall not be charged from March 1 until March 31, 2020, for non-residential property owned by individuals or legal entities;
- The CIT payers released from the obligation to increase the financial result for taxation for the amounts spent to charity or help for fighting with COVID-19. The list of goods and organizations should be approved in an act of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine;
- VAT exemption for medicines, medical devices and other products required to address COVID-19 outbreak (as per the list approved by the Government) extended to cover not only import, but also supplies inside Ukraine.
US Federal Link to IRS COVID-19 page: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus
US California suspends for 60 days interest on late sales tax remittances due to effects of virus or complying with health requirements. https://www.ftb.ca.gov/about-ftb/newsroom/covid-19/index.html?WT.ac=COVID-19
Vietnam is proposing cutting VAT for agriculture, forestry and fishery; production and processing of food; weaving; producing costumes; producing shoes; transportation of all kinds; Air transportation; warehousing and transport supporting activities; accommodation services, catering services; activities of travel agents, tour business and supporting services and small businesses. It is also considering a five-month delay on VAT payments by businesses.
Refer to the Directive 11/CT-TTg dated 04 March 2020 of the Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, the content "Urgent tasks and solutions to remove difficulties for production and business, ensuring social security in the context of the Covid-19 epidemic”