Receipt first? Ministry has some unconventional plans.

The Ministry of Finance has revealed some interesting ideas for improving VAT tax collection and fighting dishonest taxpayers. According to the draft bill that can be found on Government Legislation Centre’s website, state officials would like sellers to issue receipts before they receive payment for sold goods and services. Business experts call it nothing but madness.


A receipt is a document recorded on a fiscal cash register which proves a transaction has been made. According to current regulations, it should be presented to the buyer immediately once a purchase has been made. A document needs to include several important pieces of information to be considered a receipt, including the seller’s VAT number and address, the date and time of the purchase and the number of both the cash register and the cashier.


The draft regulations which are currently being worked on state that a receipt shall be issued to the buyer without their request and before receiving the payment, regardless of the payment method. What is important, the government wants the new provisions to be effective of January 2019 which is merely weeks away. If this is the case, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for retail sellers to adapt their cash registers on time.


The goal behind all this is obtaining higher revenue from value added tax. The new solution is to be a weapon against the sellers who fail to record transactions and, in this way, pay lower taxation. However, economic experts indicate that regulations in the current form are not in line with EU laws and that rapid implementation of the provisions may result in chaos.


The Ministry of Finance stresses the fact that the new regulations are linked to the upcoming law on online cash registers and are in the consultations phase. In other words, the final provisions may differ considerably from what we see now. The date they come into effect may change as well.