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Update December 2016: The VAT rate increase expected in January 2017 has been cancelled. The government has not announced a new date for the VAT rate increase announced earlier in 2016.
The Italian government has announced plans to increase the standard VAT rate from 22% to 24% in January 2017, and a further increase to 25% in January 2018. The confirmation of these changes will depend on the growth of the Italian economy over the next year.
Although the announcement has been made with sufficient time for implementation, the confirmation of these changes may only be published late in 2016. In Italy, VAT rate changes are often announced with little time to adapt ERP systems and update reporting processes. Also rules on credit notes on invoices issued before the rate change make it complicated from a VAT compliance perspective.
Ever since the start of the financial crisis in 2007, almost all Member States have opted to increase their VAT rates to compensate the decrease on tax revenues. Following recommendations of the European Commission and OECD, reduced VAT rates accumulated most changes, with the basket of goods subject to these rates gradually becoming standard rated items.