What is VAT?


Value-Added Tax (VAT) is a tax, which is payable on sales of goods or services within the territory of the Member States of the EU. The tax, in all cases, is ultimately payable by the final consumer of the good or service. Each party in the chain of supply (manufacturer, wholesaler and retailer) acts as a VAT collector.

They collect VAT from their customer and include that VAT in their VAT return to Revenue. When returning the VAT collected, they can reclaim as appropriate, VAT which has been charged to them by their suppliers.  

For VAT purposes, the territory of the State includes its territorial sea. The territorial sea of the State extends to a limit of twelve nautical miles.

This section explains:

  • who are taxable and accountable persons
  • exemption from VAT
  • reverse charge (self-accounting)
  • qualifying activities
  • VAT and fraud.

Next: Who are taxable and accountable persons?