Spain to add live B2B e-invoices to existing SII real-time reporting; rollout between 2024 and 2026; legal obligation on ERP and billing system vendors to offer compliant systems
A technical specification Bill launching mandatory B2B e-invoices, with government pre-clearance with AEAT, the state tax agency, has been issued on 21 February 2022. This would only apply to resident Spanish businesses with a fixed establishment from 24 January 2024. B2G e-invoicing is already mandated in Spain where invoices to public bodies are above €5,000.
An invoice QR code requirement has been added.
On November 2021 a law (‘Crea y Crece‘ Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan) mandating electronic invoice issuing and receiving by all Spanish B2B VAT payers – companies and the self-employed. The obligation will start first for large taxpayers from 24 January 2024 following approval by Parliament and official Gazette publication. All other businesses would be mandated early 2026.
EU VAT in the Digital Age reforms include a channel for harmonised Digital Reporting Requirements (DRR) and Continuous Transaction Controls (CTC) by EU states. This grew from the 2020 EU Tax Action Plan proposals for a fairer and more efficient EU tax regime.
Spain’s SII live invoice reporting regime was introduced in July 2017. This new e-invoicing regime may not replace SII since it is not part of the VAT or invoicing laws. Instead, it is being introduced to existing 2007 legislation around “promotion of the society of digital information).
2024-26 two-phase roll out of B2B e-invoices
The next phase is the approval by Parliament and Gazetting the law in the state bulletin. The rollout will likely be as follows:
- 2024 large tax payers (turnover above €8 million); and
- 2026 all other taxpayers.
It is likely that any possible government mandated plan would be based on the pre-clearance model, and be supported by the Digital Toolkit for small businesses. A public consultation is now being launched.
Spain has already indicated that it will require QR Codes included to help digitally track invoices. The Royal Decree plans a legal requirement for software developers and retailers to ensure their accounting and similar systems are able to comply with the new e-invoicing requirements and are able to transmit prescribed data to the tax authorities.
E-invoicing to fight VAT Gap
The proposal to extend mandatory e-invoices to all businesses and non-incorporated businesses for business-to-business transactions aims to improve the efficiency of business operations but also to help fight VAT fraud. The European Commission’s VAT Gap estimates that Spain lost €6.8 billion in expected Value Added Tax revenues.
Italy’s SdI e-invoice regime has shown remarkable success in closing its VAT Gap by almost 10% in just one year. France and Poland are to follow with 2023 being a big year for European e-invoice initiatives. The EU e-invoice consultation is well underway.