What has been happening?
From January 2011 the law changed across Europe to bring exhibition services under “The General Rule”. However, each country within Europe enacted the law slightly differently and, whilst most of the EU countries agreed that we supplied exhibition service, HMRC in the UK insisted we were making land related supplies. Land related supplies don’t come under the general rule so we have had to continue to charge UK VAT to all exhibitors at our UK events.
What has changed?
HMRC has conceded that their definition of exhibition services is putting the UK exhibition industry at a disadvantage so from 3rd August 2012 they have changed their definition and we do now supply exhibition services. Unfortunately, because they are not admitting an error the change is not retrospective so we can’t re-invoice exhibitors on shows that have already happened.
hOW WILL THIS IMPACT EXHIBITORS at the london book fair?
"The General Rule" will impact exhibitors in 3 different ways depending on where they are based (see below). Where the exhibitor is based will now be more important than where the exhibition is held.
UK Exhibitors: There will be no change for UK exhibitors. You can continue to reclaim VAT through your UK VAT return.
Other EU Exhibitors: You must supply a valid VAT number, then we won't charge VAT.
Rest of World Exhibitors: No action is required, you will not be charged VAT if your address is outside Europe.
Will you have to pay any UK VAT?
The main item which will still be subject to UK VAT is admissions. Ths means both charges to get into the event itself and areas within the exhibitions, for example conferences and seminars.
For more information on the VAT rules please email or call Sam D'Elia on +44 (0)20 8910 7149