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Taxation and Customs Union

Central Electronic System of Payment information (CESOP)

Transmission and exchange of payment data to fight VAT fraud

On 18 February 2020, the Council adopted a legislative package to request payment service providers to transmit information on cross-border payments originating from Member States and on the beneficiary (“the payee”) of these cross-border payments. Under this package, payment service providers offering payment services in the EU will have to monitor the payees of cross-border payments and transmit information on those who receive more than 25 cross-border payments per quarter.to the administrations of the Member States

This information will then be centralised in a European database, the Central Electronic System of Payment information (CESOP) where it will be stored, aggregated and cross-checked with other European databases. All information in CESOP will then be made available to anti-fraud experts of Member States via a network called Eurofisc.

The objective of this new measure is to give tax authorities of the Member States the right instruments to detect possible e-commerce VAT fraud carried out by sellers established in another Member State or in a non-EU country.

The measure respects the data protection rules. Only information related to payments that are likely to be connected to an economic activity is transmitted to the tax authorities. Information on consumers and on the reason underlying the payment is not part of the transmission.

The transmission of data must start on 1 January 2024.

Implementation

In order to implement the proposal, the European Commission will work with Member States’ tax administrations and payment service providers in an expert group, which will assist with both the implementation of the reporting obligations for payment service providers and the development of CESOP.

Among other activities, the expert group will help the Commission to:

  • Create the electronic standard form to transmit data from payment service providers;
  • Identify the technical measures for establishing, maintaining and technically managing CESOP;
  • Draft guidelines on the reporting obligations.

The expert group will also work in collaboration with an expert team composed of IT experts from Member States, which will develop the technical requirements linked to the establishment of CESOP.

Expert Group

To prepare the work of the expert group, which will start its activity on 11 May 2020, the European Commission has prepared a survey to request input from payment service providers and actors in the payment industry. The survey focusses on the issues that are important for payment service providers in order to comply with the reporting obligations laid down in Directive (EU) 2020/284.

The results of the survey will be used to organise and feed into the work of the expert group. The survey also aims to give representatives of all payment service providers in the EU a possibility to express their views and contribute to the implementation of the law. As such, payment service providers and interested parties are strongly invited to answer the survey and provide their valuable contribution.

The survey is available on EU Survey and will run until 4 Mai.

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