The European Parliament’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) has proposed a one-year extension to the implementation timeline of the VAT in the Digital Age (ViDA) reforms. The committee’s rapporteur, Belgian MEP Olivier Chastel, suggested that the 2-day reporting threshold for intra-community supplies from 2028 should be extended to 10 days. Chastel also raised concerns about the security and confidentiality risks associated with the requirement for reporting IBAN payment details with intra-community digital reporting. The EU Parliament’s role in these amendments is advisory.
EU’s Customs Code Reform: A Game Changer for VAT?
The European Commission has drafted proposals for a reform of the EU Union Customs Code, which could have significant VAT implications. The proposed changes include the introduction of an “EU Customs Data Hub”, using artificial intelligence in customs checks, and modifying cross-border e-commerce processes.
A key proposal is the removal of the €150 consignment threshold for VAT liability, which could simplify VAT compliance. This change would extend the “import one-stop shop” (IOSS) simplification, the “deemed seller” regime, and the “special arrangements” simplification to all imported goods sold to EU consumers, regardless of their value.
The reforms also propose a new “deemed importer” regime, allowing traders to apply a simplified tariff treatment for consumer sales when determining the appropriate customs value. These changes aim to streamline customs procedures and rules, potentially impacting businesses operating in the EU.
eBay Ads: Rise in demand for luxury goods
Despite ongoing economic challenges, the Summer Shopping Report 2023 from eBay Ads reveals a growing desire to shop among German consumers. Even though more than half of Germans (57%) intend to shop only as needed, the willingness to spend money on luxury and wellness items and gifts is rising.
There is an increasing demand for specific product categories, including travel, DIY and luxury fashion. The growth in wellness and luxury products such as Jacuzzi tubs (+100%), handbags (+120%) and earrings (+360%) is particularly striking.
In addition, fitness equipment is seeing an increase in demand, especially among 18-29-year-olds. Currently, German buyers on eBay.de prefer jogging, basketball and yoga equipment.
Delivery Hero, talabat Debut AI Shopping Assistant
Delivery Hero and talabat have introduced talabat AI, the first AI grocery shopping assistant in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). The feature, developed at a recent hackathon, allows customers using talabat’s grocery delivery service, talabat Mart, to search for recipes and identify available ingredients simultaneously. The AI assistant provides cooking instructions, tips, and nutritional information and suggests complimentary dishes. Currently, the Beta version of talabat AI is available to talabat pro subscribers in the UAE, with plans for expansion into Kuwait and other markets later this year.
World Sustainable Transport Day: UN’s New Annual Event
The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 26 as the annual World Sustainable Transport Day, starting this year. The resolution, initially proposed by the International Road Transport Union (IRU) and presented by Turkmenistan, aims to highlight the crucial role of transport in society, economic development, and environmental protection. The day will be marked globally with events to raise awareness of sustainable transport issues. The resolution also encourages collaboration among international and regional organisations, and the private sector, to strengthen all modes of transport, particularly in developing countries.
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