Customs: Please note that from July 1 you always pay VAT on purchases in web shops outside the EU | Kaap Newspaper

Most Utrecht online shoppers are unaware of the new EU rules

Rotterdam: Anyone who buys something from a webshop outside the European Union (EU) as of July 1 always pays VAT. Also for purchases under € 22. This is due to the new EU VAT rules. A survey commissioned by Customs * shows that the majority of Utrecht residents (53.6%) who bought something from a webshop outside the EU in the last six months are still not aware of the new EU VAT rules . That’s why Customs is launching a campaign to prevent online shoppers from being surprised by unexpectedly more expensive purchases.

Currently, companies outside the EU do not have to charge import VAT for packages up to € 22, but companies within the EU do. This allows web shops outside the EU to offer cheaper products than European web shops. This will change with the new rules. This contributes to fairer competition with European web shops.

According to Nanette van Schelven, Director General of Customs, information about the new EU VAT rules is important: “With the online shopping campaign, Customs wants consumers to be aware of the additional costs in a web shop outside of the European Union. For purchases under € 22, VAT will be added from July 1. Usually this refers to 21% of the purchase amount. “

The 3 main countries of settlement

China has been a favorite for years when it comes to web stores outside of the European Union. The in-depth survey commissioned by Customs confirms this. Nine out of ten (90.6%) surveyed recently made a purchase here. British online stores are in second place (14%). As of January 1, 2021, the UK is no longer part of the EU. Web stores in the United States (12.3%) also remain popular.

Additional costs

Do you buy something from a webshop outside the EU? Check before paying which costs are included. If VAT is not listed, you will pay it later. The postal or parcel company transporting the package in the Netherlands will declare it to Customs. The postal or parcel company often charges a fee for this administrative work; customs clearance costs. Customs clearance costs vary depending on the carrier and are in addition to the VAT you pay to Customs. With purchases over € 150 you normally pay customs duties (up to 12% of the purchase amount).

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Vince Fernandez

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