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Greek VAT credit refunds to speed up

  • Jun 27, 2014 | Richard Asquith

Greek VAT credit refunds to speed up

Greece is to improve on its long record of delays for repaying VAT credits.

Companies which have a VAT credit (a surplus of input VAT paid vs. output VAT charged) on the Greek VAT return have often had to wait many months for a refund. This is a basic requirement of the EU VAT Directive. Whilst administrative hold-ups are usually sighted as the problem, many commentators have blamed the state’s poor financial position as the real reason, and companies being used as unpaid creditors. Long VAT inspections of VAT credits have increased suspicion.

The government has announced that it is launching this month a new electronic filing system for VAT returns, which will be able to automatically determine where credit should be refunded. This will be based on prior tax payment history, and will enable refund to be processed in 5 working days.

The reform is part of a wider review of the Greek tax administration being undertaken by the EC. Greece has the lowest success rate in the EU of collecting tax revenues

VP Global Indirect Tax
Richard Asquith
VP Global Indirect Tax Richard Asquith
Richard Asquith is VP Global Indirect Tax at Avalara, helping businesses understand their compliance obligations as they grow globally. He can be contacted at: He is part of the European leadership team which won International Tax Review's 2020 Tax Technology Firm of the Year. Richard trained as an accountant with KPMG in the UK, and went on to work in Hungary, Russia and France with EY.