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VAT in the Netherlands

VAT Guide for EU countries within Europe

VAT in The Netherlands

Whether you’re a European or non-European company, establishing certain activities in the Netherlands may mean you need to register for VAT. You can use a fiscal representative or tax advisor to draw up your VAT, Intrastat and ESL returns with total peace of mind in the Netherlands.

If you deal with companies in the Netherlands, you may be able to claim a Dutch VAT refund.

Here you can find the specifics of VAT regulations in the Netherlands, which work alongside the harmonised framework of the EU as explained in our guide to intra-Community VAT obligations.

Basic information

EU membership 1957
ISO code NL
VAT introduced in the Netherlands 1969
VAT name in the Netherlands Belasting over de toegevoegde waarde (BTW)
VAT ID format in the Netherlands NLSSSSSSSSSSSS
Territories with special status in the Netherlands n/a

VAT rates in the Netherlands

Standard VAT rate 21 %
Reduced VAT rate (1) 9 %
Reduced VAT rate (2) n/a
Super reduced VAT rate n/a
VAT parking rate n/a
Zero VAT rate no

Thresholds triggering VAT reporting obligations in the Netherlands

Intrastat threshold at introduction 800000 EUR
Intrastat threshold on dispatch 1000000 EUR
Distance selling threshold As of 1st July 2021, the threshold is EUR 10,000 for all intra-Community distance sales.

Reporting frequency in the Netherlands

Intrastat declaration monthly depending on threshold
EC Sales List (ESL) declaration monthly according to threshold/conditions, quarterly depending on threshold/conditions
VAT returns every 2 months according to threshold/under certain conditions, quarterly depending on threshold/for certain services, annually depending on threshold/certain conditions
Reporting currency EUR

VAT-related penalties in the Netherlands

Failure to file a VAT return Maximum penalty of EUR 131 per return.
Late payment of VAT Penalty ranging from EUR 50 to 10% of the amount of VAT due up to a limit of EUR 5,278. In the event of fraud, a penalty of up to 100% of the VAT due may be imposed.
Failure to report ESL/DEB For a first misdemeanor, a penalty of up to 2.5% of the amount of VAT due up to a limit of EUR 5,278. In the case of subsequent omissions, a penalty of up to 25% of the amount of VAT due up to a limit of EUR 5,278.

Useful links on VAT in the Netherlands

Tax Authorities in the Netherlands Tax authorities
Ministry of Finance in the Netherlands Ministry of Finance
Check a VAT number in the Netherlands Check a VAT number
EU VAT Guide EU VAT Guide
The Netherlands, a founding member of the European Union, a member of Benelux and the 7th largest economy in the European Union, is strategically located in the heart of Europe, between Germany, France and the United Kingdom, making it a true international trading platform. This position is reinforced by the significane of the Rotterdam port, Europe’s largest port, which allows the Netherlands to be one of the main gateways to the European Union for many imports.
These are all reasons for operators to develop activities that may require VAT registration and involve various reporting obligations.

The Dutch VAT legislation is in line with the EU directives. It is codified in the Dutch VAT Act of 1968 Wet op de omzetbelasting, and the Act of 1st January 1969.
Every foreign trader must, in principle, be registered for VAT in the Netherlands if they supplies goods or services to or from the Netherlands. The same applies to any operator who has carried out distance selling in the Netherlands (subject to thresholds). A foreign operator who has appointed a fiscal representative with limited authorisation (BFV) does not need to register for VAT in the Netherlands.

The current VAT rates in the Netherlands are as follows:

  • Standard VAT rate: 21 %
  • Reduced VAT rate (1): 9 %
  • Reduced VAT rate (2): n/a
  • Super reduced VAT rate: n/a
  • VAT parking rate: n/a
  • Zero VAT rate no

Certain transactions in Europe may require registering for VAT and filingVAT returns in the Netherlands:

To check if your activities involve VAT obligations in the Netherlands, use our VAT simulator or contact us.

When do e-traders need to register for VAT in the Netherlands?

In the Netherlands just like in other European Union countries, e-traders must register for VAT:

  • when the overall threshold of EUR 10,000 for Intra-Community distance selling is exceeded and they have not opted to pay the VAT in the Netherlands via the One Stop Shop,
  • or when they hold a stock of goods in the Netherlands and must report the stock supply transactions.

What are the VAT obligations for e-traders in the Netherlands ?

In addition to VAT registration, e-traders must:

  • Apply the defined VAT ratesin the Netherlands: standard rate (21 %), reduced rates 1 and 2 (9 % and n/a).
  • Declare stock transfers between marketplaces‘ storage platforms, as well as the supply translactions for these stocks.
  • File periodic returns (VAT returns, intrastat, ESL), to ensure their VAT compliance in the Netherlands.

> Learn more about the VAT & e-commerce regulations and the VAT regime for logistics platforms in Europe.

Why identify yourself to VAT in the Netherlands?

You may need a VAT number in the Netherlands to fulfil your tax obligations in this country. Indeed, certain activities such as sales, purchases and subcontracting operations may require VAT identification. To check if your activities require VAT identification in the Netherlands, use our VAT simulator or contact us.

VAT Dutch is named Belasting over de toegevoegde waarde (BTW)and the VAT numbers in the Netherlands have the following structure: NLSSSSSSSSSSSS.

How do I get a VAT number in the Netherlands?

The administrations in charge of in the Netherlands VAT are the following: Tax authorities, Ministry of Finance.

Registering for VATis a relatively simple formality compared to setting up a company, but in addition to obtaining a VAT number in the Netherlandsyou’ll need to file periodic VAT returns to ensure your VAT compliance. Which is why we recommend foreign companies use a fiscal representative or tax advisor.

Companies with a VAT number in the Netherlands must complete and submit VAT returns in the Netherlands detailing all taxable income (sales) and expenses (costs), with the following periodicity: every 2 months according to threshold/under certain conditions, quarterly depending on threshold/for certain services, annually depending on threshold/certain conditions.

Failure to comply with the deadlines imposed by the Dutch authorities for the deposit and payment of VAT will result in the payment of penalties . For this reason, it is recommended that foreign companies use the services of an agent or a tax representative.

These penalties are defined as follows in the Netherlands:

  • Penalties for failure to file a VAT return in the Netherlands: Maximum penalty of EUR 131 per return.
  • Penalties for late payment of VAT in the Netherlands: Penalty ranging from EUR 50 to 10% of the amount of VAT due up to a limit of EUR 5,278. In the event of fraud, a penalty of up to 100% of the VAT due may be imposed.

In addition to VAT returns, companies may be required to provide the Dutch authorities with Intrastat & EC Sales List returns:

  • Intrastat returns enable the Dutch authorities to compile foreign trade statistics.
    Companies must file these Intrastat returns as soon their turnover reaches the threshold.
    Intrastat threshold at introductio n in the Netherlands (800000 EUR HT/an)
    – Intrastat threshold on dispatch in the Netherlands (1000000 EUR HT/an).
    Failure to comply with the deadlines imposed by the Dutch authorities for the filing of these Intrastat returns wil incur a penalty payment for the company.
  • The sales summary returns (EC Sales List or ESL) or purchases (EC Purchases List or EPL) in the Netherlands are for tax purposes.
    Failure to comply with the deadlines imposed by the Dutch authorities for the filing of these ESL returns wil incur a penalty payment for the company.

In principle, a non-resident company in the Netherlands can recover all or part of the VAT incurred on its expenses.

There are three different scenarios:

  • The company, whether it is established within the European Union or not, is already registered for VAT in the Netherlands, or is obliged to register for VAT in the Netherlands. In this case, it must apply for a VAT refund via the periodic VAT return filed in the Netherlands, according to a periodicity:every 2 months according to threshold/under certain conditions, quarterly depending on threshold/for certain services, annually depending on threshold/certain conditions.
  • The company is established within the European Union, is not registered for VAT in the Netherlands and is not required to do so. In this case, a VAT refund should be requested via the tax authorities’ electronic portal in the country where the company is established.
  • The company is not established within the European Union and is not required to register for VAT in the Netherlands. In this case, they must use the services of a fiscal representative to carry out what is required by the Dutch authorities on their behalf.
    > Learn more about our VAT recovery services.


*This information is subject to change without notice.

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