E-COMMERCE / Sales « B to C »
E-commerce: Few generalities...

Definition of E-Commerce: Sale of goods to individuals via a website. Goods can be imported and/or stored in an EU Member State.

    • VAT is a general tax that applies to all commercial transactions involving the production and distribution of goods or services over a large territory (EU plus Great Britain, Norway and Switzerland)

    • VAT is a percentage of the base price of the product or service. It applies to every stage of the sales chain

    • VAT is collected through a system of declarations where the registered company declares its tax payable and deducts the tax that has been charged on its purchases of goods or services.

    • VAT is ultimately paid and not deducted by the final consumer

In concrete terms:

Your company will import products from a third country or ship products from a member country that are then sold to individuals (consumers) in one of the member countries.

E-COMMERCE / « B to C » : What are the Registration Requirements?

If you are a non-EU company, in order to import, store and sell your products in each of the Member States, you must register for VAT in the EU country where you store your goods.

Monthly or quarterly returns must be completed and submitted in each of the states where sales are made.

Fiscal representation is necessary!


    • Register for VAT and act as a tax representative in each of the EU states where sales are made

    • Complete and submit your VAT returns, VAT recapitulative statements, Declaration of Exchange of goods, annual declarations…

    • Be your intermediary with local administrations

    • Help you in case of control

    • Advise you on the formulation of your invoices

    • Keep your company informed of changes in VAT legislation

To simplify the reporting and payment obligations of operators on these transactions, an optional system called a one-stop shop for VAT (OSS-IOSS, for “One-Stop-Shop – Import One-Stop-Shop”) is set up at European Union level.

Companies that opt for the configuration are no longer required to register with the tax authorities of each Member State of consumption in order to declare and pay the VAT due. VAT is declared and paid to a single Member State via the one-stop shop.

The one-stop shop for VAT concerns the supply of services to non-taxable persons in a Member State in which the supplier is not established, distance sales of intra-Community goods, and sales of goods from third countries in consignments with a value of €150 or less located in the EU, to non-taxable persons in the EU.

The OSS (“one stop shop”) plan for businesses established in the EU

Everything you need to know about the one-stop shop

You can opt for this plan if you are:

    • A taxable person established in the EU who supplies services to non-taxable persons located in a Member State in which you are not established

    • A taxable person (whether or not established in the EU) who makes intra-Community distance sales of goods

    • An electronic interface (sales platform) established or not within the EU facilitating intra-EU distance sales of goods (or supplies of goods), in France or in other EU Member States, by sellers not established in the EU to persons not subject to VAT (presumed supplier).

The OSS (“one stop shop”) scheme for companies not established in the EU:

You can opt for this regime only if you are not established in the EU (you must not have established your registered office in a Member State or have a permanent establishment there). The pattern concerns only the supply of services to non-taxable persons.

The IOSS import regime (” import one stop shop “):

You can opt for this regime if you are a supplier (or an electronic interface (platform) acting as a deemed supplier)


COSMOPOLITE is here to help you make the best choice for your E-commerce business!

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