Mandatory use of structured electronic invoices in Belgium

On the proposal of Finance Minister Vincent van Peteghem, the Council of Ministers approved, at second reading, a preliminary draft law making the use of structured electronic invoices mandatory.

The preliminary draft, adapted to the opinion of the Council of State, amends the VAT Code in order to introduce an almost universal obligation to issue structured electronic invoices between taxable persons. According to the governmental press release, the benefits of e-invoicing can only be maximized if the creation, sending, receipt and processing of an invoice can be fully automated and if structured electronic invoices are used, which are machine-readable and allow automatic and digital processing by the recipient.

The introduction of the obligation to issue structured electronic invoices is a first step towards the longer-term modernization of certain VAT data flows between taxpayers and from taxpayers to the FPS Finance, making maximum use of modern technologies that digitize, automate and speed up these data flows. The FPS Finance is planning a communication campaign around the future entry into force of electronic invoicing.

The preliminary draft law will be submitted to the King for signature, with a view to its submission to the Chamber of Representatives.

The Belgian Council of Ministers has agreed that mandatory e-invoicing for taxable persons (B2B) will be introduced from 1 January 2026. This decision applies to all taxpayers, regardless of their turnover. The European PEPPOL network will serve as the default standard for structured electronic invoicing. More about e-invoicing in Belgium you can find in one of our previous blog posts.

E-Invoicing Mandate in Denmark

In 2022, the Danish government passed a new law requiring businesses to use digital bookkeeping systems for all B2B transactions. Denmark was one of the first EU-countries to introduce B2G e-invocing in 2005. Nowadays it plans to introduce B2B e-invoicing requirement. The mandate is being phased in over several years, with different groups of businesses required to comply at different times.

Phase 1: January 1, 2024

Businesses with a turnover of more than DKK 500 million must use e-invoicing for all B2B transactions.

Businesses with a turnover of more than DKK 50 million but less than DKK 500 million must use e-invoicing for transactions with businesses with a turnover of more than DKK 500 million.

Phase 2: January 1, 2026

All businesses with a turnover of more than DKK 300,000 must use e-invoicing for all B2B transactions.

Final Dates for B2B E-Invoicing Mandate in France

Since January 2020, e-invoicing has been mandatory for business-to-government (B2G) transactions. Now, the French government has called for a standardized e-invoicing system for all transactions (B2B, B2C) on both the sales and purchasing sides.

The French government has finally reached to an agreement on the timeline for the implementation of B2B e-invoicing and voted the following key dates in December:

-  September 1st 2026 (or before December 1st 2026), all companies have to receive e-invoices, big companies must produce e-invoices
- September 1st 2027 (at the latest December 1st 2027) : e-invoicing and e-reporting for everyone (all size companies).

More about electronic invoicing in France you can find in our previous blog post

B2B E-Invoicing Mandate in Poland

In Poland, B2B e-invoicing transactions have been allowed on a voluntary basis since the beginning of 2022 and will only become required as of July of 2024. The EU has granted Poland provisional permission to impose mandatory B2B e-invoicing between January of 2024 and December of 2026. 

On August 7, 2023, the President of Poland signed the Act of June 16, 2023 amending the Polish VAT Act and several other acts. This law confirms the date previously announced by the Ministry of Finance for the introduction of the new e-invoicing format. As of July 1, 2024, taxpayers must be prepared for mandatory electronic invoicing and the National Electronic Invoicing System (KSeF - Krajowy System e-Faktur).

We wrote more about e-invoicing in Poland here.

B2B E-Invoicing Mandate in Romania

Romania introduces electronic invoicing for B2B in 2024 for companies, both locally based and with branches in Romania. On July 27, 2023, the update was published in the Official Journal of the European Union no. L 188, Implementing Decision (EU) 2023/1553 of the Council of 25 July 2023 authorizing Romania to apply a special measure derogating from Articles 218 and 232 of Directive 2006/112/EC on the common system of value added tax.

The decision allows Romania to introduce mandatory electronic invoicing for all transactions between taxable persons established on the territory of Romania as of January 1, 2024. The measure will be applicable until 31 December 2026. If Romania deems it necessary to prolong the special measure, it may submit a request for prolongation to the Commission, together with an evaluation report on the effectiveness of the national measures in terms of combating VAT fraud and evasion and simplifying VAT collection.

Companies that do not adapt to the new regulations in time will face fines from March 31, 2024, which can vary and be significant depending on the size of the company. It is therefore imperative to ensure compliance with the new regulations.

The central Romanian e-invoicing platform "RO" has enabled the exchange of invoices in the B2G and B2B sectors since November 2021. The article outlines important aspects, including the submission deadlines, the XML format "RO_CIUS" and the retention rules.

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