The Intrastat control system was designed because the VAT rates applied in the various Member States are different and it is not possible to apply the same VAT mechanism to goods in free circulation traded between Member States of the European Union.

For example, for goods purchased in France and destined for Italy, there would be the anomaly that the VAT applied by the seller is French not equal to that which the Italian buyer would pay if the goods were purchased in Italy.

Trade in goods in free circulation between Member States is defined as intra-Community acquisitions when they enter the territory of any of the EU Member States or intra-Community sales if they leave the territory of any of the Member States to another Member State. With this system the seller French issues a sales invoice without applying VAT (as if he were exporting outside the European Union). Both the seller and the recipient will register the transaction in the Intrastat lists that must be deposited at customs (monthly, quarterly or annually depending on the turnover).

These lists are cross-referenced by a European control centre to verify that the seller does not make a false sale outside his own country and that the recipient does not release goods for consumption in his country without VAT being collected. Intrastat allows each nation to apply its own specific VAT regulations and rates.


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Posted on

4 June 2018