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HMRC internal manual

VAT Single Market

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HM Revenue & Customs
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Simplifications: triangulation: examples

Introduction

The following examples illustrate the impact of the simplification rules in situations involving UK participants. It is assumed that the intermediate supplier in each case has quoted a VAT registration number in the Member State implied by its title - for example French Co = French VAT registration number.

UK business as the first supplier

Use this link to view Triangulation examples 1 diagram

In these circumstances

  • French Co, as the intermediate supplier, will quote their French VAT number to UK Co to allow the supply of goods to be zero rated in the UK subject to the normal rules
  • under the simplified procedure German Co will account for VAT due on French Co’s supply in Germany as a reverse charge
  • as a result French Co will not be required to register in the UK or Germany provided they are not making other supplies in either Member State.

UK Co is not required to take any further special action in respect of the supply.

UK business as the intermediate supplier

Use this link to view Triangulation examples 2 diagram

In these circumstances

• UK Co, as the intermediate supplier, will quote their UK VAT number to French Co to allow the supply of goods to be zero-rated in France

• under the simplified procedure German Co will account for VAT due on UK Co’s supply in Germany as a reverse charge

• as a result UK Co will not be required to register for VAT in France or Germany, provided they are not making any other supplies in either Member State.

UK Co will be required to invoice German Co and include the supply on their EC sales list as described at VATSM5235. They might also wish to check with the German tax authorities whether they have any further obligations under the German arrangements. Contact details can be found on the website mentioned at VATSM1100.

UK business as the final customer

Use this link to view Triangulation examples 3 diagram

In these circumstances

  • German Co, as intermediate supplier, will quote their German VAT number to French Co to enable the supply of goods to be zero-rated in France
  • under the simplified procedure UK Co will account for VAT due on German Co’s supply in the UK as a reverse charge
  • as a result German Co will not be required to register for VAT in France or the UK, provided they are not making any other supplies in either Member State.

UK Co will receive a copy of German Co’s NETPU notification and an invoice from German Co indicating adoption of the simplification arrangements (see VATSM5235).