October 18, 2019
Dutch Customs announces that non-EU company can no longer act as exporter from The Netherlands as of 1 December 2019
On 1 October 2019, Dutch Customs announced that as of 1 December 2019, a non-European Union (EU) established entity would no longer be allowed to be reported in box 2 of the export declaration. Consequently, a non-EU company can no longer act as an exporter for exports from the Netherlands. Prior to the announcement, this was allowed for non-EU companies which appointed an indirect customs representative. Non-EU companies exporting from the Netherlands therefore have a 2-month period in which they must arrange alternative means of ensuring Dutch exports continue to flow as usual from 1 December 2019.
The change in approach of the Dutch Customs will have an impact on non-EU principal companies, non-EU companies in general or, considering Brexit, United Kingdom companies currently exporting from the Netherlands. As of 1 December 2019, such companies will need to authorize another company to act as exporter or change their EU customs presence so that they will be regarded as a company established in the EU Customs Territory (either by setting up an EU entity, or by establishing a “permanent business establishment” for customs purposes).
Background of the changes
On 30 July 2018, the European Commission published amendments to the Commission Delegated Act of the Union Customs Code (UCC), introducing a new definition of exporter in the EU. According to this definition, a company that wants to act as an “exporter,” should be a company established in the EU customs territory and:
Lack of harmonization between EU Member states
Following the changes, most EU countries (the Netherlands included), however, did allow non-EU entities to act as exporter as long as they appointed an indirect representative. This would be allowed during the transitional period of the implementation of the EU Automatic Export System (UCC IT system) which has been extended until 31 December 2025 in the Netherlands.
Other EU Member States (Belgium, Italy, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, and recently Germany) have changed their approach prior to the Netherlands by no longer allowing a non-EU company to be reported as exporter in box 2 of the export declaration. The approach of some other EU Member States remains unclear, but there seems to be a shift in the approach of EU customs authorities to no longer allow the transitional arrangement.
Steps to mitigate the impact
Non-EU companies exporting from the Netherlands should review their supply chain and ensure it is in conformity with the new changes. Businesses should also work with their local tax professional to:
For additional information with respect to this Alert, please contact the following:
Ernst & Young Belastingadviseurs LLP, Global Trade, Amsterdam
Ernst & Young Belastingadviseurs LLP, Global Trade, Rotterdam