The e-commerce VAT package has a serious loophole

Not only Poles can combine. Every country in the world does this effectively, and China is no exception. It can be expected that Chinese sellers will help Polish customers not to pay VAT, because VAT package for e-commerce leaves a certain “gap”.

The e-commerce VAT package has a serious loophole. Smart Chinese sellers will help you stay tax free

It will take effect from tomorrow, i.e. on July 1, 2021 VAT package for e-commercewhich, in theory, will impose on buyers the obligation to pay VAT for each product purchased outside the European Union. It can be collected in two ways: either when delivering the parcel to the customer, or when purchasing it – then it will be added to the price of the purchased product (this applies only to orders with a value of up to EUR 150; then the recipient will only pay the postage). All fees are to be collected in cash – card payment will be possible only in the case of “certain courier deliveries”.

Poczta Polska informs that the process of handling a shipment from outside the European Union will be as follows:

  • The customer orders the goods (for example, in a Chinese store),
  • After the shipment arrives in Poland, an employee of Poczta Polska makes an electronic customs declaration for the recipient, which is sent to the AIS / e-COMMERCE system operated by the National Revenue Administration,
  • On the basis of the data contained in the declaration, the National Revenue Administration calculates and provides Poczta Polska information on the amounts of tax or customs and tax duties that Poczta Polska is obliged to collect and pay to KAS,
  • Tax or customs duties, together with the postage fee specified by Poczta Polska, are collected upon delivery by an employee of Poczta Polska or at a post office,
  • Settlement of the amounts of tax or customs and tax receivables collected by postal workers with the National Revenue Administration.
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source: Polish Post

The Polish Post also specifies that VAT package for e-commerce applies to all shipments containing goods from third countries, including letter items. The exception is, however, shipments with a value of up to EUR 45, sent by a natural person to a natural person, if they are occasional and contain goods that constitute a gift and do not contain articles subject to excise duty.

This is where a wicket arises that Chinese retailers will likely use. Marking shipments as a “gift” was common before, and now it will even become desirable so that the buyer can avoid having to pay VAT. However, only practice will show whether VAT package for e-commerce it will put an end to this, because Poczta Polska clearly states that such parcels should be occasional and sent by a natural person from a country outside the European Union.

By the way, it is also worth mentioning that for parcels with a value of up to EUR 150, “only” VAT and postage will be charged for making a customs declaration by Poczta Polska, while for those with a value of up to 150 euros, also customs duty. According to the updated price list of Poczta Polska, making a customs declaration will cost PLN 8.50 gross. If the recipient refuses to pay the amount due, the shipment will be returned to the sender.

Finally, it is necessary to add that Poczta Polska “by default” will handle all formalities in the case of parcels with a value of up to EUR 150 (you can opt out of this if you wish). The others must be declared by their recipients or their designated customs agents, although a power of attorney may also be granted to Poczta Polska to handle shipments with a value from 150 to 1000 euro.

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