We draw your attention to the fact that from now on there is a new mechanism for the levying and payment of value added tax (VAT) in the countries of the Eurozone. Game developers will pay the tax according to the scheme adopted not at the place of registration, but on the territory of the consumer's location.

Who is affected by the new rules, and what difficulties can affect Russian companies in connection with these changes - we'll tell you about this in our article.

The profitability of selling games and content in Europe today does not cause doubts. Undoubtedly, this topic is relevant for developers and publishers. At the same time, they have to be flexible enough in terms of adaptation of games to the mentality and other features of the foreign consumer, with which the representatives of the gaming market successfully cope. But there is one more component of the success not only of gaming, but also of any other business. And this is an understanding of the financial and legal aspects, for which it is often necessary to consult a specialist.

Who will have to work in accordance with the innovations?

New VAT charging and payment rules in the European Union entered into force on January 1, 2015. Accordingly, companies operating in the B2C sales sphere calculate the tax depending on the jurisdiction in which the consumer is located. And this means that by selling a virtual product to representatives of different European countries, the creator (publisher) of the game will pay different amounts of VAT. The order of payment and compensation/deduction of VAT will be different.

Directive 2006/112 / EC has undergone changes designed to regulate the market for electronic services and goods. The main objective of the changes is to create conditions for fair competition between European and foreign companies in the struggle for the European consumer.

As is known, registration and obtaining of the taxpayer's number is a mandatory procedure for each company that provides services to European users. Sellers of electronic goods, as well as services are subject to these requirements regardless of the volume of sales and revenues received. In other words, even for one consumer of your services you will need to calculate VAT individually.

In the list of products that fall into the category of electronic goods and services, there are:

  • software;
  • downloadable games for computer and mobile, online games;
  • digital content, etc.

Who is responsible?

In accordance with the Directive, it is the supplier of goods and services of electronic type that is responsible for the calculation and payment of VAT. Therefore, in the operation with the payment systems of the world, not the providers of payments are responsible for the B2C transaction, but the developer (publisher) of the games, if he is indicated as a supplier in the check.

The administrative levers of bringing national legislation to the norms of the Directive in a particular European country are also different. Belgium, for example, places the highest fines for non-compliance with new rules (up to 200% of the total amount of tax).

Bringing activities in line with the innovations

A foreign supplier can obtain registration as a VAT payer in two ways in the absence of a valid VAT number and representation in the EU countries, namely:

  1. Undergoing registration at own discretion with a view to becoming a VAT payer.
  2. Use of the simplified registration form of MOSS. At the same time, you can select any country in the European Union, according to the laws of which VAT will be paid in the future. The tax authorities of the EU countries already offer this way of registration.

If the company has been registered before the end of 2014, from the beginning of next year it can file reporting and pay taxes in the relevant country. The application, submitted in 2015, will come into force in the next quarter.

But in order to carry out the sale for European users before passing the procedure on the principles of MOSS, it is necessary to notify the state authority to this before the 10th day of the month that follows the date of the first sale. Otherwise, sales reports conducted in 2015 and further will be compiled in accordance with the requirements of the country in which the purchase was made.

Possible technical difficulties

Among some of the problems that the representatives of the market for electronic goods and services will now meet are the following:

  • The problems associated with the preparation of the implementation of the mechanism, which allows to determine the location of the user. An exemplary algorithm, of course, exists, but the technical implementation of this task is still costly and consuming (in terms of finance and time).
  • The received and processed information (for user identification) is stored for 10 years. Hence - the need to ensure the protection of personal data.

Prices: how to deal with them?

Earlier, the possibility of applying tax optimization mechanisms allowed business owners to keep affordable prices for all consumers of EU countries. Now companies will be faced with a choice: to keep the price, but to pay a larger tax, or to increase the cost of services and goods, which inevitably entails a decline in sales rates.

Not surprisingly, most publishers and developers of electronic products intend to raise prices.

With all the intricacies of innovation, there is every reason to believe that there will not be a drastic reduction in the incomes of game developers and publishers, since there is no reason for a drop in demand for these products.