Which VAT rates do you apply to indirect and direct exports?
When it comes to VAT, exports can be a tricky area to get right.
When you're going to export goods, you need to consider which VAT rate you're allowed to charge.
This would be either the standard VAT rate of 14% or the zero rate (0%).
And in order to determine which rate to use, you'll need to know whether the export is DIRECT or INDIRECT.
Failure to know this critical difference can see you being held liable for heavy penalties and interest.
Having said, let's take a look at these definitions and ensure you understand them correctly in applying the right VAT rate...
Is when the seller of the goods, a South African VAT vendor, delivers, or arranges and pays for the delivery of the goods to the client at a foreign address.
In this case, VAT can be charged at the zero rate.
is when a foreign buyer of the goods, a non-resident of South Africa, collects the goods themselves in South Africa, or if they arrange and pay for the goods to be delivered to an address in their foreign country.
In this case, the South African seller must charge VAT at the standard rate. Beyond that the seller has no further responsibilities. It'll be up to the buyer to claim a refund on the VAT.
NOTE: If you charge VAT at the zero rate on a direct export, you'll be required to keep several documents in order to make SARS happy.
To find out what these documents are, go to chapter E 02: Exports
in your Practical Tax Loose Leaf Service
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Simply click here
to get your hands on a copy of this invaluable resource today.
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