On 3 April 2020, the European Commission published Decision C(2020) 2146 „on relief from import duties and VAT exemption on importation granted for goods needed to combat the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak during 2020”. The measure extends for instance to any kind of protective and medical equipment such as gloves, masks, glasses and ventilators imported after 30 January 2020 and will remain in place for six months.
On 16 April 2020, the European Commission’s Directorate General for Taxation and Customs Union (DG TAXUD) has published a Questions & Answers document on the application of the Commission Decision. Unfortunately, and contrary to previous information provided by the Commission, the document specifies that the rule does not apply for cases „where a private company imports protection equipment for its own need.”
This forces us to retract the information for members included in the initial version of Info Flash 07/2020 as sent on 8 April. We will continue to follow the issue and explore options to obtain an exemption for our sector.