VAT registration changes in Switzerland

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Until now, a foreign company had the obligation to register for VAT in Switzerland, as soon as its taxable transactions in Switzerland reached 100 000 CHF (approximately 85 000€).

From 1st January 2018, this threshold of 100 000 CHF will concern the global turnover of the company. From the first euro in Switzerland, if your turnover exceeds 100 000 CHF, you will be subject to the Swiss VAT.

This change of regulation will have a significant impact on numerous companies carrying out taxable transactions in Switzerland, or wishing to develop there. Indeed, the country estimates that nearly 30 000 foreign companies will have to register for VAT starting from the 1st of January.

When filing out your declaration, it is important to note in which country the services or/and goods are provided.


On the 29th of September 2016, Swiss Houses of Parlement revised the VAT legislation. As a result, apart from the VAT identification threshold, several other changes have been made:

  • VAT will be applied on e-books and online medias at the rate of 2,5%
  • VAT for selling artworks and antiquities will change
  • additionnal services in insurance sector (like those linked to social welfare and professional formation services) will be exempt from Swiss VAT


Also, some changes concerning VAT rates applied in Switzerland that will be come into force on the 1st of January, 2018.

Old rate New rate
Normal rate 8,0 % 7,7 %
Reduced rate  2,5 % 2,5 %
Special rate for lodging sector 3,8 % 3,7 %

Source : Swiss Confederation website 

For example, here are the changes in the retail business  :

Applicable VAT from the 01/01/2011 until 12/31/2017  from 01/01/2018
Normal rate 8,0% 7,7%
Reduced rate  2,5% 2,5%
Special rate 3,8% 3,7%

If you need more information about VAT, take a look at our e-service So Simple Report (FR) which will answer your questions.

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