principal / Belgian VAT basics / Import VAT deferral and postponed import VAT in Belgium
Import VAT deferral allows companies to delay the payment of import VAT. Although import VAT is usually due at the time of importation, when import VAT deferral is allowed, this import VAT is due at a later stage (usually, between 4 and 10 weeks after importing the goods).
Postponed import VAT accounting allows companies to avoid the payment of import VAT by declaring this amount as due and deductible in the VAT return. This system has a nil monetary effect for companies (unless partial exemption applies) and a cash flow advantage when importing goods into the country.
Belgium introduced the postponed import VAT accounting. Deferral of import VAT does not apply in Belgium. Businesses can apply for a postponed import VAT accounting license to the Belgian tax authorities. This application is open to non-established companies registered directly or via fiscal representative. Postponed import VAT accounting is often referred as ´ET 14000 license´.
More information is available in the notice published by the Belgian tax authorities about Postponed import VAT accounting.