VAT

is a value added tax on goods and services within the European Union (EU). The EU’s institutions do not collect the tax, but EU Member States are each required to adopt a value added tax that complies with the EU VAT code. EU VAT (known as “output VAT”, that is, VAT on its output supplies) is charged by a business and paid by its customers. VAT that is paid by a business to other businesses on the supplies that it receives is known as “input VAT” (that is, VAT on its input supplies). A business is generally able to recover input VAT to the extent that the input VAT is attributable to (that is, used to make) its taxable outputs. Input VAT is recovered by offsetting it against the output VAT for which the business is required to account to the government, or, if there is an excess, by claiming a repayment from the government. The final consumer does not receive a credit for the VAT paid. The net effect of this is that each supplier in the chain remits tax on the value added, and ultimately the tax is paid by the end consumer.

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