As of 2022, the Flemish government has reached their e-invoicing goals. This means that government entities are required to utilize e-invoicing under the European Directive 2014/55/EU. Since 2017, the Flemish government has required e-invoices from all of its suppliers.
Business-to-government e-invoicing is mandatory. All public authorities must be able to receive e-invoices and select public authority suppliers are required to send their invoices in the specified electronic format (PEPPOL BIS).
Vlaanderen, the official gateway for the Flemish government, indicated that the Flemish government's approach is a commitment to fully digital processing of public procurement and related processes: end-to-end e-procurement. Since 2015, the Flemish government has ruled that all businesses must be able to receive e-invoices.
Implementation of B2B E-Invoicing
Plans for July 2023 are pushed to July 2024 as important decisions and a concrete plan still needs to be made.
Belgium has not yet asked the Council of the European Union and the European Commission for the necessary permission to make e-invoicing mandatory. It is likely that the obligation will be limited to domestic taxpayers and foreign companies will be excluded.
The original plan consisted of three phases, but this schedule is likely to move to 2024:
- July 2024: Large companies
- January 2025: Medium-sized companies
- July 2025: Small businesses
Whether B2B or B2G transactions, all companies operating in Belgium are subject to a 7-year archiving period for invoices (electronic or not). Archiving outside of Belgium is permitted under certain conditions.
PEPPOL for B2B E-Invoicing
Belgium will not impose its own e-invoicing standard as in Italy and Poland. It is likely that a PEPPOL 4-corner framework will be adopted, which has already been approved in Belgium for B2B. However, it should be noted that it has not yet been determined whether PEPPOL will be the exclusive format.
Using the PEPPOL network provides businesses with a common technical standard for electronic document exchange for domestic and international trade in Europe.
When it comes to Belgium, there is an authority that oversees the correct use of this model. This authority has assumed the role of the federal government (BOSA). All companies can use PEPPOL; its use depends on a company's volume of invoices, its financial system, its accounting software, or its billings.
The Belgian public sector accepts e-invoices from any sender that meets the PEPPOL interoperability specifications, and all Belgian businesses are able to receive e-invoices compliant to the European standard on e-invoicing, using the components mentioned beforehand.
Given the information for the requirements of e-invoicing for B2B the plans are still expected to follow the current schedule. However, given the situation decisions might change.
You can find more details here.