Thursday 16 May 2019

9:00 – 9:15     
Welcome and introduction by Prof. Patrick Wille, president of VAT Forum

9:15 –9.30
Opening of Forum Proceedings: Yiannis Tsangaris, Cyprus Commissioner of Taxation

9:30 – 10:30   
New VAT rules for vouchers in 2019
Patrick Wille, president VAT Forum

Back in June 2016, the European Commission approved Directive 2016/1065 as regards the treatment of vouchers, which came in force in January 2019.

The changes result in some vouchers being classified as ‘single-purpose vouchers’, which means that in future they will be taxed at the time of sale instead of the time of use.
An initial analysis of the commentary on the new rules published by the Member States has shown firstly that various interpretations are possible, and secondly also that certain issues are not clear at all and are not even covered in the clarification of the new legislation.

This session will focus on some issues that lack clarity.
The VAT consequences of providing free vouchers and the use of a voucher to make a partial payment where the voucher is not issued by the supplier are not entirely clear.
What are the new rules? What do you need to know to deal with this complex topic in the future?

Panel discussion

10:30 – 11:00
Coffee break

11:00 – 12:30
New VAT rules for taxation of trade between member states in 2020
Marja van den Oetelaar, Partner The VAT Consultancy Firm B.V

In preparation for the definitive VAT system for intra-Community trade, four quick fixes will be introduced in 1 January 2020 to simplify the application of VAT to trade within the member states:

  • Call-off stock simplification
  • Chain transactions
  • VAT identification number and ESL as a material requirement
  • Harmonization of proof of transport for intra-Community supplies.

Panel discussion

12:30 – 14:00 

14:00 – 14 :30
VAT Compliance: The Case of Cyprus:
Haris Hadjimichael, Head of  Department for EU Affairs and Tax Treatment, Cyprus Department of Tax

14:30 – 15:30 
Brexit, what should you know?
Richard Asquith, VP Global Indirect Tax, Avalara           

  • Update on the Brexit political process
  • VAT changes and additional compliance burdens
  • Customs obligations and tariff charges on trading with the UK
  • Strategies to limit the costs

Panel discussion

15:30 – 16:00 
Coffee break

16:00 – 17:15 
Short overview of important cases at the European Court of Justice
Alexis Tsielepis, Partner Chelco VAT

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) plays a central role in offering guidance as to how to interpret and define provisions of the VAT Directive.  Important as some decisions may be, the ECJ is not always consistent and neither does it continually provide sufficient clarity in addressing the questions before it. A review of the most important recent judgments of the ECJ will provide a technical update as well as a look into where the ECJ has followed its previous decisions, and where it is perhaps seeking to broaden or reduce the application of the VAT Directive.

17:15 – 17:30 
Wrap-up of the day

20 years of VAT Forum    
Gala Dinner: At Art Nest. An idyllic art park, in the village of Fasoula, littered with sculptures by renowned local artist, Philippos Yiapanis. Welcome drinks outdoors and a short speech by the artist will be followed by a sit-down gala dinner in the park’s picturesque grounds. The evening will be set off with the lighting of the eternal flame.