VAT guide for the Netherlands

Learn about Dutch VAT rates and compliance in the Netherlands. Understand how VAT works, the different rates, exemptions, and rules for VAT returns.

VAT Guide for the Netherlands

Welcome to our practical guide on VAT (Value Added Tax) for the Netherlands, crafted to assist e-commerce sellers within Europe who are considering expanding their operations to the Dutch market. Grasping the Dutch VAT system is key for running a smooth business and staying compliant with both local and EU VAT regulations. In this guide, we cover essential information on the VAT rates for different types of products and services, the VAT registration process, filing requirements, and other crucial points.

Dutch VAT Rates in 2024

The Netherlands sets its VAT rates in compliance with EU regulations, ensuring that the standard rate is at or above the EU’s minimum of 15%. If you’re conducting business as a VAT-registered entity in the Netherlands, it’s imperative to apply the correct VAT rates to your sales and to remit the collected tax to the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration (Belastingdienst).

Below are the VAT rates applicable in the Netherlands:

RateTypeGoods and Services Covered
21%Standard VAT rateThe Standard VAT rate applies on most goods and services.
9%Reduced VAT rateBooks, food, medicines, art, antiques, and entry to cultural and sporting events.
0%Zero rateInternational transport, certain sea and air transport services, and goods exported outside the EU.


VAT Compliance Rules in the Netherlands

Compliance with Dutch VAT specifications is crucial for businesses to prevent any legal or financial complications. This includes acquiring a Dutch VAT number and meeting the VAT filing deadlines.

How to Register for VAT in the Netherlands

Businesses intending to engage in taxable supplies within the Netherlands must register for VAT. The steps involved in registration are:

  1. Application Submission: Complete the appropriate VAT registration forms available from the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration.
  2. Documentation: Provide relevant documentation including your company’s incorporation documents, proof of identity for the company’s directors, and a description of your business activities.

Once your application is reviewed and approved, you will be issued a Dutch VAT number, which is mandatory for all your VAT transactions within the Netherlands.

Dutch VAT Filings

VAT-registered businesses in the Netherlands have to submit regular VAT returns. The frequency of submission and the deadlines can vary based on business size and transactions.

  • Electronic Filing: VAT returns are typically filed electronically via the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration’s online services.
  • Submission and Remittance: Timely filing of VAT returns and payment of any VAT due is necessary to avoid penalties, in accordance with the VAT Directive.

For detailed instructions on VAT return procedures or any recent updates, it’s recommended to consult the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration or a tax professional familiar with Dutch VAT laws.

VAT-Related Fines in the Netherlands

Adherence to VAT regulations is vital to avoid fines and penalties. The Dutch authorities may impose fines for several types of infractions as follows:

Infraction TypePenalty DescriptionFine / Penalty Range
Late FilingFiling a VAT return past the deadline.A fixed fine, with the potential for an additional percentage of the VAT due depending on the delay.
Late PaymentPayment made after the VAT due date.Interest on the amount of VAT due, calculated from the due date until payment is made.
Inaccurate FilingIncorrect or incomplete VAT declarations.Fines based on the degree of fault and amount of VAT involved, up to a certain limit.
Failure to RegisterNot registering for VAT when required.Fines and retrospective assessment of owed VAT, plus interest.
Record Keeping ViolationsPoor maintenance of VAT records and invoices.Penalties depending on the nature of the violation.

It is important to note that penalties and interest rates are subject to change and should be confirmed with the latest information from the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration or a tax advisor.


VAT Registration Thresholds in the Netherlands

For businesses operating in the Netherlands, it is crucial to know when VAT registration becomes mandatory:

  • For local Dutch businesses: The VAT registration threshold is a turnover of €20,000. Once this threshold is exceeded, a business must register for VAT.
  • For EU-based businesses: VAT registration is required for any taxable sales to Dutch consumers, with no threshold.
  • For non-EU-based businesses: Generally required to register for VAT from the first taxable supply to Dutch consumers, and may need to appoint a fiscal representative.

These thresholds are subject to changes, and different conditions may apply for specific services such as electronic, telecommunication, and broadcasting services to consumers. It is advised to stay updated with the latest Dutch regulations or consult with a tax advisor for accurate guidance on meeting VAT registration requirements in the Netherlands.

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Do you have inventory stored abroad because you sell through Amazon FBA, for example, or use a European fulfillment center? Then you need an European VAT registration in that country! Save yourself the paperwork and let us apply for your VAT registration.

Where can I use the VAT registration?

You can use the VAT number for any business purpose. For example, when selling through Amazon,, Shopify or another platform. The number is also valid if you are going to do business locally that requires a European VAT number.

If you have a VAT registration abroad, you will also have to file VAT returns there. How often and when to do so, depends on the country. It can be monthly, or quarterly.

We understand that you don’t feel like doing all the VAT administration. So leave it to us: link your sales accounts to Staxcloud, so we can always accurately file your European VAT return. Then you won’t spend any more time on VAT returns.

July 1, 2021, the One Stop Shop went into effect, also known as the One-Stop Shop system. Do you sell more than €10,000.- across borders every year? Through this new regulation, you declare your VAT of all the countries in which you do business at once. If you have all your stock in your country of residence, you no longer need a VAT number in those other countries. In the One Stop Shop declaration, you declare every cross-border sale within the EU.

That involves quite a bit of math. Especially if you sell through multiple platforms! We’ve come up with something on that: you can link all your sales channels (Amazon,, Shopify and more) to Staxcloud. This way you always have all your VAT data at hand, and within 5 minutes you have your One Stop Shop declaration arranged. Staxcloud does the calculations, and our Staxxers handle the declaration further. Handy right?

A tariff is a tax on imported goods, and the tariff number, also called a tariff code or HS code, gives customs officials more information about what kind of item is being imported. The standard code is a six-digit number, but some countries have codes of 8 or 10 digits.

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Dealing with VAT

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Vat consult for e-commerce

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Janine Bouwmeester

VAT consultant