VAT collection in Norway changed since 2017
How was it done previously ?
Previously, customs-agents like DSV were responsible for the customs clearance of shipments, as well as the provision of all information regarding the relevant VAT and taxes. When the customer had a credit number with the local customs office, VAT and taxes were treated there. If not, DSV had to advance these amounts while the goods were kept in a DSV terminal until reimbursement by the customer.
What has changed since 1 January 2017 ?
Norwegian companies are now fully responsible to inform Customs about which VAT amount they have to pay. Customs agents like DSV are no longer involved in this entire process. Attention: this change only concerns the VAT – where taxes are concerned the procedure stays unchanged. As long as there are no taxes to be paid, DSV is now able to deliver directly to the final addressee, without transshipment or storage in a Norwegian DSV terminal until the VAT has been reimbursed.
DSV Norway will now verify whether or not a shipment is subject to taxes. In case no customs-credit is available, they will still have to put the cargo “on hold” until these are paid.
What does this mean in concrete terms ?
In concrete terms, this implies that any information regarding the goods (number of packages, gross/net weight, value, Incoterms,...) has to be accurate and specific.
Whether it concerns transport orders, e-services or EDI's, denominations like “parts”, “load” or “equipment” are no longer sufficient for operators and customs agents in Norway to determine whether or not goods are subject to taxes.
Any incorrect information can result in substantial fines, chargeable to the customer. Should it appear that taxes are to be paid on a shipment, without preliminary notification by the customer, the latter will be held responsible for possible costs, additional taxes and fines.