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7 September 20232 minute read

Public consultation launched with respect to administrative guidelines on the “single complex transaction” regime


It follows from Article 257 ter of the French tax code that, even where a VAT taxable transaction is - in principle - made of distinct and independent elements that are so closely linked that they form, objectively, a single and indivisible economic supply, which it would be artificial to split, it must be considered as one single transaction for VAT purposes (ie, with respect to territoriality, exemptions, rate, etc.).

The French tax authorities published administrative guidelines on 23 August 2023 and have also added a specific subchapter on composite offers, which outlines the principles and methods applicable to determine whether a single complex transaction exists or not, and the tax treatment thereof (BOI-TVA-CHAMP-60).

Administrative guidelines also provide specific guidance for different sectors (insurance, banking and financial services accompanying the marketing of goods and supplies, packaging of delivered goods, etc.).

The guidelines are subject to a public consultation open until 31 January 2024, which means that, until that date, taxpayers can address their comments to the French tax authorities.

Furthermore, the French tax authorities published an appendix, which summarises all relevant CJEU case law according to the VAT question raised (qualification, exemption, rate) and the industry sector. (BOI-ANNX-000503)


Key takeaway

Composite supplies are a complex area of VAT law and guidelines are always welcome. Taxpayers are strongly encouraged to use the public consultation to raise any concerns that they may have.