As a foreign supplier of goods directly to consumers (B2C) in Norway, you might be liable to collect, report and pay VAT to the Norwegian Tax Administration.
From 2020, Norway will abolish the exemption of VAT and other indirect taxes on low value goods sent from foreign sellers to consumers in Norway. The intent is to charge VAT for all goods, regardless of value.
The changes will take place in two steps.
- From 1 January 2020, the exemptions for low value goods (goods with a value below 350 NOK) will be abolished for foodstuffs, restricted goods and goods subject to excise duties.
- From 1 April 2020, Norway plans to abolish the exemption for VAT for the remaining goods.
1. Foodstuffs and goods subject to excise duties
As of 1 January 2020, foodstuffs and goods subject to excise duties in Norway will be charged with these duties and VAT when crossing the Norwegian border. The customer is responsible for paying these taxes, although the transporters and shipping agents may declare the goods on behalf of the customer. Please note that these liabilities also will apply to foodstuffs of low value.
If you sell foodstuffs or other goods subject to excise duties in Norway, you should
- Remove any campaigns, tabs, or mentions of "items you can buy below the VAT exemption limit"
- Inform your customers about this change from today's regime
- Take steps to ensure that relevant information about the goods is available to the transporter and, subsequently, the Norwegian Customs. Read more about Customs Clearance of goods at Custom.
Foodstuffs are defined as any goods meant for human consumption, including nutritional and dietary supplements, i.e. also drinks, sweets, protein powder, tea, herbs and spices, etc.
The transporter and/or shipping agent can calculate and pay the fees on the consumer's behalf, based on information about the parcel and its content. The sender is obliged to provide such information to the transporter and/or shipping agent. The transporter and/or shipping agent can charge the consumer an additional fee for this service.
2. Low value goods
As of 1 April 2020, Norway intends to introduce a simplified VAT regime for sellers and intermediaries. Online marketplaces will be liable for VAT on cross-border sales of low value goods to consumers in Norway. The new system has similarities with the new Australian and New Zealand GST (Goods and Services Tax) regimes, as well as the EU VAT scheme for B2C imports of low value goods from 2021.
If you sell low value goods to consumers in Norway, you should
- Register in the simplified scheme (VOEC), at the latest when your yearly turnover exceeds 50,000 NOK.
A simplified scheme, called VOEC (VAT On E-Commerce), will be established for sellers and online marketplaces that sell goods to Norwegian consumers. The VOEC scheme will be only for VAT, and only for goods with value less than NOK 3,000. Foodstuffs and goods where excise duties are imposed are not part of the scheme, and will be treated as described in the previous section.
More information will follow when the detailed legislation and guidelines are completed.