VAT upon import

VAT is levied on normal domestic business transactions. VAT is a typical European tax. When purchasing goods from a European, non-Dutch company, you as a Dutch company are not charged VAT, a so-called intrastate transaction. This has to do with the company’s ability to offset VAT and the different VAT rates charged by the various EU member states.

In the case of such a transaction, the VAT is moved “across the border” by means of the VAT number. As non-European suppliers do not use VAT, but the government does wish to receive a VAT input tax for these goods, VAT upon import was introduced.

VAT upon import is calculated on the customs value, including the calculated import duties. That means VAT is also levied on the import duties. The company must include this VAT upon import in its VAT administration, and it will be set off against the VAT received. Again, it is the consumer who pays. VAT upon import currently stands at 21%.


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