Council Directive (EU) 2018/1910 was transposed into Spanish law on 4 February 2020. Together with Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1912, the Directive provides for VAT “quick fixes” in four areas. The Spanish implementation measures in respect of the first three will enter into force on 1 March 2020; the fourth measure applies from 1 January 2020.

1. Call-off stock arrangements

Such arrangements occur, if a VAT-payer sends goods from one Member State to another Member State and they are stored for their subsequent supply to a different VAT-payer in the recipient Member State. Until 2020, despite different Member States’ practices, these transactions triggered three VAT-able events:

  • an intra-EU transfer of goods in the dispatching Member State;
  • an intra-EU acquisition of goods by the supplier in the recipient Member State (which required the supplier to register for VAT in that Member State); and
  • a domestic supply of goods in the recipient Member State.

The new regulations simplify the procedure and establish that only two VAT-able events exist if the goods are supplied within a year of arriving in the recipient Member State (meaning that the supplier does not need to be VAT-registered in the recipient Member State):

  • an intra-EU supply of goods in the dispatching Member State; and
  • an intra-EU acquisition of goods in the recipient Member State when the ownership of the goods is transferred to the purchaser.

2. Chain transactions

The VAT treatment of these transactions is clarified by ascribing the intra-EU transport of goods to the supply made to the “intermediary operator”, to the extent that the intermediary provides its supplier with a VAT identification number issued by a Member State other than that from which the goods are dispatched.

3. Exemptions to intra-EU transfers of goods

To avoid the fraudulent application of the exemption to intra-EU transfers of goods, two additional requirements apply: the acquirer must provide a VAT number issued by a Member State other than that from which the goods are dispatched and the supplier must include the transaction in the recapitulative statement of intra-EU transactions.

4. Proper evidence of transport of intra-EU transfers of goods required

Several iuris tantum presumptions have been introduced to prove the intra-EU transport of goods that is required for the exemption to intra-EU transfers of goods to apply.