VAT in Austria since 1973
VAT is in force in many countries, including Austria. It was introduced in 1973 and is administered by the Bundesministerium fur Finanzen. VAT in Austria is called UST MwSt and has a standard rate of 20%. It covers all products and services that are not covered by reduced rates, which are equal to 13% and 10%. A zero rate also applies to certain goods.
Different VAT rates
As in other European countries, in Austria various VAT rates apply to specific groups of products offered on the market. Normally, goods and services are subject to a basic rate of 20%. In some cases, however, a reduced VAT rate is applied. This applies to the following products:
VAT 13% - certain agricultural products, wood for the fireplace, flowers and cut plants used for decorative purposes, air tickets for domestic flights, tickets for sports, cultural and amusement park events, wine production,
VAT 10% - foodstuffs, take-away food, pharmaceutical products, domestic transport excluding flights, road and rail transport within and outside the European Union, works by writers and composers, books, e-books, newspapers and magazines, cable TV, TV licence, social services, restaurants excluding certain beverages, cut flowers and plants for food production, certain agricultural products, domestic waste disposal, sewage treatment,
0% VAT - hotel accommodation, transport within and outside the European Union excluding road and rail transport.
How to register for VAT?
In order to get an Austrian VAT number, an application for registration must be completed through the Austrian public administration website, the Federal Ministry Republic of Austria Finance. Foreign taxpayers who do not have a permanent residence or a fixed place of business in Austria will only receive an Austrian VAT number if they apply for it separately and if they supply goods or services in Austria. The VAT application form must contain the reasons and a detailed description of the transactions that are taxable in Austria. It must also include the names of the orders and the cooperating suppliers and customers.
Austrian traders whose business exceeds an annual turnover of €100,000 must file monthly VAT returns. Companies whose annual turnover exceeds €30,000 but is less than €100,000 must file quarterly VAT returns. For foreign companies trading in Austria that are VAT registered in their home country, the VAT registration threshold is 0 (zero). VAT returns must be filed by the 15th of each month, starting from the second month after the companys registration.
In addition to the VAT declaration, foreign companies operating in Austria may be required to submit Intrastat statistical reports. These contain information on the import or export of goods between countries belonging to the European Union as well as the transfer of own goods to a warehouse located in another EU country, for example Germany.
The threshold for both Intrastat imports and imports is €750,000 per year. In this case, the monthly Intrastat report must be submitted by the 10th of the month following the period to which the report relates. The submission of factually inaccurate data or late submission of VAT returns may be subject to a penalty of 10 per cent of the VAT due. If a trader is late with a payment, an additional fee of 2 per cent of the total liability is charged.