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UK VAT deductibility for EU Financial Services

  • Nov 10, 2020 | Richard Asquith

The UK’s Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, today announced that Financial Services, including Banking and Insurance, will be allowed to deduct the input VAT suffered on their export services to the European Union.

The UK leaves the EU VAT regime after 31 December 2020, the end of the Brexit transition period. This will leave the UK free to change the VAT rules, and vary from the EU’s VAT Directive exemption for VAT – meaning not VAT due, but no right to deduct VAT.

U.K. businesses providing certain financial services will benefit from increased VAT recovery under an extension of the ‘specified supplies’ rules. At the moment, these rules only apply when a U.K. business is providing certain services to non-EU customers; from 2021, the ‘specified supplies’ rules are being extended to include sales to non-U.K. customers. 

The UK measure will give a tax subsidy to the import UK sector. This comes at a time with the UK has lost its Financial Services ‘passporting rights’ into the EU market, and will likely not win ‘equivalence’ with EU rules. That means a loss of direct rights to sell into the EU. 

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.