Public Consultation for VAT on Charters

Sanremo, today 27th May 2020

Following to our news released on 19th December 2019 (see here for more info: www.yachtwelfare.it/vatreduction) this past 25th May 2020 the Italian Revenue Office (Agenzia Delle Entrate) has finally put under Public Consultation a draft concerning the provisions for the application of the VAT reduction on Italian charters, according to the EU’s articles 56 and 59 of the EU VAT Directive 2006/112/CE.

The most credited method to calculate the actual VAT due would seem to be a pro-rata reduction based on the cruising outside the European territorial waters, according to the real time or to the actual cruising miles spent at “high sea” (international waters), in accordance to the hereinbefore mentioned article 59-a.

Therefore, the main focus is to find and agree the list of papers, equipment and methods to determine the actual use of the yacht outside the EU territorial waters and so the exact VAT due in Italy.

This Public Consultation can be found at this link https://www.agenziaentrate.gov.it/portale/web/guest/consultazione-pubblica-del-25-maggio-2020 and it will be open to the professionals’ review and contributes until 3rd June 2020.

After this date, finally, the new law will come into force only from its official publication.

This also means that any charter signed before the official publication of the new law will be subject to the old legislation (e.g. 6.6% flat-rate reductions on Charter Fee).

Anyway there’s still the chance that the Italian Minister will decide to follow in the footsteps of the French Finance Minister and so to suspend until 2021 the implementation of the new regulation in order to revitalise the yachting industry, especially after the recent situation of COVID-19 pandemic.

We will let you know about the progress of this long-awaited decisions as soon as possible.

Stay tuned with us in the forthcoming weeks to know and assess the developments.

For any additional info or clarifications required please email us to info@yachtwelfare.it.



Italy is sailing again!

Italy is sailing again! With his last DPCM (Decree of the President of the Council of Ministers) released on May 16th 2020 the Italian Prime Minister expressly authorised the possibility to sail in Italy within the region of residence. This rule will last until 2nd June.

As of June 3rd 2020 the regional limit will fall and it will be possible to freely sail around all the Italian coasts.

Also – not less important – from this date June 3rd) the Italian Government will reopen the borders to all EU citizens without the need to spend quarantine periods.

This is the clear sign that the Mediterranean summer 2020 is finally started.

The charter sector has received the go-ahead for the measures to be taken for the resumption of the charter activity.

These measures consist in very simple procedures, most of which are now widely known to everyone.

Firstly it has been confirmed that a COVID-19 test will be required for the charter’s permanent crews, who will need to deal with many different guests, especially on large yachts.

Secondly the Ministry has pointed out that in pleasure yachting the individual responsibility is the essential element in making social distancing measures effective, therefore:

a. interpersonal distance of at least one meter

b. avoiding close contact

c. proper sanitization of spaces

d. nose and mouth protection for passengers

We must make it clear that the rules published by the Ministry regard pleasure yachting, chartering, renting as well as the management of ports and marinas.

Below you will find the key points to respect when sailing in Italian waters.


PRIVATE / PLEASURE YACHTS

The primary measure remains the “social distancing”. As you all know this means that persons need to stay at least one metre from each other, unless they are part of the same family or live together.

Even the relatives, if not living together, must respect the social distance of one person for each linear metre of the boat. The provision of personal protective equipment for passengers and the use of surface sanitizer are also mandatory.


COMMERCIAL / CHARTER YACHTS

The same preventive rules for private vessels apply to yachts engaged in charter activities. Only persons living in the same family are allowed to stay together in the same cabin.

The owner is required to sanitize all the yacht’s areas, including the engine room and services. Owners are also obliged to provide adequate supplies of sanitizing products as well as information signs, written in several languages, to make the charterer and his guests aware of the necessary social and hygienic measures to take.

Certain specific measures must be adopted by the crew; let’s see which ones.

Firstly crews have the obligation to use masks and gloves and any other protective equipment depending on the type of the boat and the particular circumstance, for instance during mooring, unmooring, bunkering and towing operations.

Also crews – being called in some cases to carry out first aid actions (as in the case of the Captain for whom the elementary first aid course and BLS is compulsory) – there should be the obligation to undergo a preventive (before boarding the yacht) and periodical first aid test at COVID-19, the result of which must be duly kept on board.

Further for each member of the crew is mandatory the measurement of the temperature on a daily basis.

The crew must also implement the prevention of unauthorized access to the ship to strangers, while in port or at sea.

Those who generally live in the same house are allowed to share accommodation in the same cabin.

What about guests?

Also for guests the general rules on social distancing and interpersonal prevention measures apply (i.e. one person per meter of the linear length of the boat, including crew members, unless the guests live together).


TOURIST PORTS AND MARINAS

The managers of Italian marinas must provide their ports with special information signs, written both in Italian and English language, on the measures of conduct to respect, the use of personal protective equipment (PPE/DPI), the installation of sanitizing dispensers on the docks, the limitation of movements, bans on gatherings and the respect for social distancing.


NAVIGATION AND SYSTEM RULES

It is mandatory to comply with the regulations for travel within the Region and between Regions and the respect of international anti-contagion laws during navigation outside national territorial waters.

As this is changing for the better day-by-day we strongly recommend all of you to stay tuned to our website www.yachtwelfare.it/news to know the latest updates.


WHAT ABOUT VAT?

For what is concerned to the VAT due on Italian charters, UCINA (Confindustria Nautica, the Italian Marine Industry Association) is still dealing with the Italian Authorities to postpone the application of the new law (see here for more info www.yachtwelfare.it/somegoodnews). Everything leads to the hope that Italy will quickly join the decision taken in France, repealing the provisions contained in the new law and giving continuity to the old flat rate reduction percentages scheme (i.e. taxation at 22% on 30% of the agreed Charter Fee for yachts over 24 metres, equal to the “quick” rate of 6.6%) in order to guaranteeing “certainty” for operators in the yachting sector, especially now that they have just started their activity again after this extraordinary situation and encouraging yachts to come to the Mediterranean for the charter season.

Please know that the old legislation (flat-rate reductions on Charter Fee) will still be effective in Italy until the publication by the Italian Tax Office of appropriate provisions containing the clear list of methods and means suitable to demonstrate the effective use of the service outside the European Union.

For any further info or questions please email us to info@yachtwelfare.it

We remain at your disposal

Staff @YACHT WELFARE



Charter in Italy allowed soon

Just few rules and formalities to fulfill …

To all our Clients and Followers,

we would like to inform you that, unlike in many other Countries of the Med which temporarily stopped the marine traffic, the ports in Italy and specifically Sanremo and Genoa are operational and open for technical calls (calls for tourism reasons are not currently allowed) and that we can assist any yachts wishing to call at Sanremo and Genoa with all the necessary formalities and authorizations.
Please find here below an overview on the procedures required a list of the necessary documents to be allowed to call here. 

ARRIVING IN ITALY

To be allowed to call at Sanremo and Genoa, every yacht needs to apply maximum 24 hours before the yacht’s arrival through a registered agent for the Libera Pratica Sanitaria (Free Health Practique) to the Health Maritime Office by filling in the “Declaration of Health”, a document containing the yacht’s details and some general information about the overall health status of the crew (which you can require emailing us to eva@mansuetomarine.it). Along with that, the Authorities need also copy of the below listed papers:

1) Yacht Certificate of Registry

2) insurance

3) crew list

4) a list showing the yacht’s last 10 ports of call

5) copy of the departure clearances from the last one

6) a declaration on letterhead signed by the Captain and stamped with the yacht’s stamp, stating the following information:

a. Reason of the call

b. Address where the crew members will spend their 14 days isolation period (the yacht’s name and berth are valid and enough)

c. Confirmation that no crew member had flu symptoms or fever for at least 14 days before the yacht’s arrival and possibly a report of every crew member’s daily temperature during the last 14 days before the yacht’s arrival.

Please be informed that, once arrived, all yachts and crews will have to enter a 14 days isolation period (from which the sailing days from the last port are deducted).

CREW MOVEMENTS

Any crew movements is currently subject to the Immigration Police and the Health Maritime Office approvals; in order have the embarkation or disembarkation of a crew member authorized, we need to provide them with the following information and documents: 

EMBARKING CREW MEMBERS

1. As for anybody else entering Italy from abroad, a self-declaration (modulo rientro da Italia, please feel absolutely free to require a copy of it emailing to eva@mansuetomarine.it) showing the address where the 14 days isolation period will be spent and how they will reach it (once again, the yacht’s name and berth are valid and enough)*

2. Copy of the crew member’s passport

3. Copy of the crew member’s contract of employment*

DISEMBARKING CREW MEMBERS

1. The reason of the movement (only repatriation and hospitalization reasons are allowed)

2. As requested for the arrival, they need a new declaration, this time signed also by the disembarking crew member, stating that they did not have any flu symptoms or fever for at least 14 days before their sign off *

3. A report showing the crew member’s daily body temperature during the last 14 days before their disembarkation is strongly recommended.

4. Copy of the crew member’s passport

5. Copy of the crew member’s flight reservation (or travel information if they leave with a private transfer or vehicle)*

Please note that, the disembarkation for repatriation is allowed only if the crew member flies home on the same day, therefore it is strongly suggested to book flights leaving in the afternoon in order to have enough time to carry out the necessary procedures.

* documents that the crew members will have to bring with themselves during the travel in case of check from the authorities.

Please be informed that all the above procedure need some advance to be carried out, therefore, we kindly ask you to provide us with the necessary documents at the earliest opportunity.

GETTING OFF THE BOAT

The end of the general lockdown decided by the Italian Government to stop the spread and prevent people from getting the virus is confirmed on Monday April 13th but it will be most probably postponed to the beginning of May. That means that so far any outwards, inwards or internal movements have to be justified by a demonstrable reason such as repatriation reasons, working reasons or medical reasons; such reasons will have to be stated into the auto dichiarazione form (please require it to eva@mansuetomarine.it) and showed to the authorities in case of checks. 

We are always at your complete disposal for any questions or clarifications.

We look forward to seeing you all in the Med soon for a sunny 2020 Charter Season!

Warm regards
Yacht Welfare

Some Good News!

Sanremo, 31st March 2020

We have received a press release issued by the French Nautical Federation (FIN). You will find here below for your review an in-house translation.

The press release states that the French government has agreed to postpone the application of the new tax regulation related to charter hire (VAT due on the exact time of navigation in EU waters and the abolition of the 50% lump sum reduction).

This certainly would come as great news to our industry during these difficult times however we are waiting for the official confirmation to be issued from the French government in this regard.

Please find below the translated text from the FIN’s press release:

PRESS RELEASE | 25 March 2020, Paris

Applicable VAT Regime on charter hire: the Federation obtains a postponement of the new measure.

Following constructive contacts with the office of the Minister of the Economy, the FIN informs the professionals in the nautical sector of the suspension of the reform project aimed at modifying the 50% lump sum VAT reduction that applies when navigation outside the territorial waters of the European Union occurs during a charter.

“For several months now, we have been working in close coordination with the Government services on this subject. Until the Covid-19 crisis, we were moving forward on a common position with our Italian counterparts. This work will resume after the health crisis. We have pleaded with the government for the suspension of the measure that should have applied on 1 April. This is a relief today. This decision should be made official in the next few hours,” said Yves Lyon-Caen, President of the FIN

In the light of this the French Finance Minister has cancelled the implementation of the new regulation (see more here) due to the current situation of COVID-19 pandemic.

As the changes made to the conditions for determining the taxable base have been withdrawn, the VAT lump sum reduction (20% on 50% of the charter fee) is still applicable in the case of cruising in international waters (BOI-TVA-CHAMP-20-50-30).

For what is concerned to Italy the UCINA Confindustria Nautica is currently dealing with the Italian Authorities to do take analogous measures and therefore to postpone the application of the new rules in order to keep the old taxation law for all Charters to execute during season 2020 (taxation at 22% on 30% of the agreed Charter Fee).

MYBA 2020 Cancelled (COVID19)

Sanremo, 13th March 2020

MYBA 2020 officially cancelled. Please find below an extract from the Official Communication sent by MYBA Board today and our quick view about chartering on 2020 in the Med.

Further to our communiqué dated 5 March regarding the MYBA Charter Show, we would like to inform you that the MYBA Board held a conference call yesterday to further discuss the holding of the MYBA Charter Show in Barcelona in the current environment.  The Covid-19 virus situation has evolved rapidly over the last few days and, unfortunately, developments have not been favourable. The Board therefore finds itself in a Force Majeure situation vis-à-vis its contractual obligations and considers it is best not to proceed in these unprecedented circumstances. This is undoubtedly very disappointing news, however, taking into consideration the information that is currently available and the health of our Members and all Show participants being one of MYBA’s key priorities, it is not possible to ensure the Show is organised in the safe and productive environment that we are recognised for by the superyacht industry. The MYBA Charter Show team will be sending further details to those who have already registered and working to minimise any inconvenience caused by this unfortunate development. Thank you for your patience while we were assessing the situation and we look forward to a great Show in 2021. Kind regards MYBA Board

Well, let’s take the opportunity to make a quick summary and cast some light on what is happening in Europe and around the Mediterranean coasts. We all know that the situation of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) wreaked havoc on our lives. Right after China, Europe faced its first major outbreak as the number of reported cases in Italy grew from fewer to thousands in just few days. Officials locked down all the Italian Regions after a cluster of cases emerged in several towns located at the very North of Italy (nearby Milan). As a result, schools closed and sporting and cultural events were canceled. France did the same after just few weeks and schools and universities were closed on 9th March. Spain will do the same too starting by 16th March.

So all the EU countries are really dealing with this matter with every effort, conscientiously, strategically and supportively. We are confident that we will get through it very soon. In Italy we have this special figure of speech for situations like this “chi ben comincia, è a metà dell’opera” which the English know as “the first blow is half the battle“.

This is to say that the virus is spreading rapidly and the Mediterranean countries will surely get out of this nightmare before any other country around the world where the virus is starting to spread right now or has not started yet. Actually Italy is already half way and even further!

This should be a reason for all the yachting industry to feel encouraged to come to the Mediterranean for the summer season.

We really look forward to seeing our warm seas and cozy ports plenty of yachts during the summer.

We remain at your disposal for any possible clarification and please keep sending your inquiries to info@yachtwelfare.it

Italian (and French) VAT reduction on Charters at issue!

Sanremo, 19th December 2019

The new Italian Budgetary Bill contains anti-avoidance provisions which specifically regard the VAT on the short hire of a boat. These provisions, which will enter into force on 1st April 2020, will involve any charter having fiscal relevance in Italy, commencing from that date onwards.

The VAT reduction on charters as practiced in Italy, France, Croatia, Malta, Greece and Cyprus would no longer be applicable as done up to now (i.e. cruising into international waters to obtain the application of VAT on just a portion of the Charter Fee).

The above as a consequence of the infringements proceedings started on 8th November 2018 and continued on 25th July 2019 (with the “July Infringement Package”) by the European Commission (more info at this link: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/IP_19_4265).

The EU Commission’s purpose is to harmonize the rules between all the EU Member States applying the general criteria contained in articles 56 and 59-a of the EU VAT Directive 2006/112/CE and so the reduction of VAT on charters will need to be calculated according to a new method.

Which one? What is the method?

The most credited one would seem to be a pro-rata reduction based on the cruising outside the European territorial waters, according to the real time or to the actual cruising miles spent at “high sea” (international waters), in accordance to the hereinbefore mentioned article 59-a.

The Italian and French Authorities are actually cooperating with the EU Commission in order to outline the new guidelines to be provided before the date of 1st April 2020.

Yacht Welfare has brought to the Authorities’ attention that the new rules to apply should be known as soon as possible as the charter market needs to receive responses and guidance in the shortest time in order to plan the upcoming Med charter season.

If meantime no clear guidelines will be provided within the deadline, we strongly recommend the Charter Industry to set up a safeguard procedure (so that all parties involved into a Charter Agreement can be safe and sound) which might consist in paying a security deposit for every possible balance of VAT due.

Stay tuned with us in the forthcoming weeks to know and assess the developments of this matter.

For any additional info or clarifications required please email us to info@yachtwelfare.it.

New VAT Guide 2019

The 2019 edition of the Yacht Welfare VAT Guide is finally released. You can ask your copy by sending an email to info@yachtwelfare.it. Our Team of Lawyers and Fiscal Advisors is always available to assist you during your Charter Season in the Mediterranean Sea.

25% YES OR NOT?

Sanremo, 14th April 2019

25% YES OR NOT?

The French Customs Office has released important dispositions and clarifications about yachts engaged in commercial and transport activities (e.g. charter).


25% DUTY TO APPLY TO US BUILT BOATS

The French Customs Office confirms that every US built boat having commercial registration and officially imported in European Community before the 22nd of June 2018 will be exempt from the payment of the 25% customs duty on the boat’s return in Europe if all the standard import formalities will be executed (the same formalities and practices arranged before the 25% rule).

The same principle applies for boats exported from EU before the same date (Export Declaration is required. In absence of this Declaration an alternative proof of exportation has to be provided).

All the boats having completed the import back to the European Community can benefit from FCE/ICE (French Commercial Exemption / Italian Commercial Exemption) advantages according to the +70% rule.

If the boat has been imported under the FCE/ICE regime in 2018, it is still required to provide the proofs attesting its qualifications to take advantage of the same benefits (+70% international voyages).

Therefore, we confirm that any and all US built boats falling within the below listed cases:

1. never imported before the 22nd of June 2018, or

2. imported before the same date but having changed the Owning Company (sold/purchased)

are subject to the application of the 25% customs duty.


CHARTER UNDER TEMPORARY ADMISSION STATUS

Besides, all US built boats never imported before the 22nd of June 2018 will have the possibility to perform commercial activities (Charter) under Temporary Admission status, whether the boat is registered as commercial or private (in the latter case only if the Flag Registry admits this condition).

However, there are specific restrictions to the above frame:

a. the impossibility to have EU resident Charterers

b. at present not all the EU Members States still permit a boat under Temporary Admission to execute commercial activities (Charter).

In regards to non US built boats (EU or non-EU) registered as commercial and to coming to Europe to execute commercial activities (Charter), which are under “Import Status”, the FCE/ICE benefits apply to all those non-EU boats (as well as to some EU boats in specific cases: more info will follow) intending to execute commercial activities (Charter). This is the only case in which the Charterer can be a EU resident.

Concerning the non-EU boats which will not be imported (both Commercial and Private registered), they will only have the possibility to execute Charters under the regime of Temporary Admission and will not be entitled to charter to EU resident subjects.

As far as is concerned to side boats (chase-boats/tenders) having own registration and which are employed to attend the mother ship (main vessel), we are still waiting for the necessary clarifications by the Customs about the possibility to charter said chase boats to EU residents.


All the hereby listed rules and information provided might be subject to variations by the Customs Office.

Therefore please always contact us to know if something has been changed, integrated or just updated.

For any additional info or clarifications required please email us to info@yachtwelfare.it


You can download the complete version of this news below:


“E-INVOICE” NOT REQUIRED

Owning Companies identified for VAT in Italy by a Fiscal Representative are not required to be accredited to the SDI – Interchange System (SDI – Sistema di Interscambio ) for the e-invoicing procedure introduced by the Italian Tax Authority (Agenzia delle Entrate) starting from January 2019.

Law Decree N. 119/2018 (art. 15) amends the Italian regulation that introduced the mandatory electronic invoicing starting from 1st January 2019 (art. 1, para. 6 of Law Decree no. 127/2015) according to Implementing Decision (EU) 2018/593 from 16 April 2018 – which authorized Italy to the widespread use of electronic invoices – specifying that the obligation applies only to subjects established within the State (Italy) and not to foreign subjects identified for Italian VAT purposes, but not residing therein. This amendment implements what had been anticipated by the tax Agency in its Circular Letter no. 13/2018.

Therefore Owning Companies do not have the obligation to issue electronic invoices (e-Invoice).

This means that the actual procedure does not change and each invoice relevant to VAT due on Charters – having fiscal applicability in Italy – will still need to be issued in hard copy (paper format).

Please note that all the paper invoices issued by suppliers will need to contain the following wording: “copia cartacea della fattura” (translated: hard copy of the invoice). This will allow the Owning Company to still be able to deduct the VAT debited by the supplier. A “courtesy-copy” of the same invoice can be sent by the supplier to the client in digital format (e.g. pdf file sent by email).

A full explanation of the e-Invoicing in Italy can be consulted on the EU official website or visiting the following link: https://ec.europa.eu/cefdigital/wiki/display/CEFDIGITAL/eInvoicing+in+Italy.

For any questions or additional info please email us to info@yachtwelfare.it

Italy VAT Guide 2018

The new Italian VAT Guide for 2018 is now online.
Please feel free to download it here or below.
Stay tuned and make sure to comply with the rules.
We remain always at your disposal for any sort of clarifications.
Any need please email us to info@yachtwelfare.it.


YW VAT Guide Italy 2018