Dutch VAT rates on your

business transactions

What are the Dutch VAT rates on your business transactions?

It’s important to know the Dutch VAT rates. As mentioned here, there are different type of rates: 

The general rate of 21%
This applies to services and products. For example, a photographer may charge 21% VAT on his work. The owner of a home accessories web store charges the same for his products.

The reduced rate of 6%

This applies to foods, medicines, books and train tickets. But also about certain services. Bicycle makers, shoemakers, hotel owners and hairdressers, for example, also charge 6% of their services.

The zero rate

This applies if you do business abroad and, for example, export goods. You may have to apply different VAT rates for different services to an invoice. You must register this separately in your accounting.

But not all type of business transactions are taxed with VAT.


VAT related to purchase and sales of Services

You supply a service if you are paid for a service that is not the supply of goods. For example, if you: 

  • transport goods or people 

  • organise musical or theatrical performances

  • grant licence agreements

  • carry out advisory duties

  • work as a lawyer or accountant

  • carry out repairs or maintenance duties

Whether you will be required to pay VAT relating to these services depends on the question whether you supply the service in the Netherlands. If that is the case then usually you will be required to pay VAT in the Netherlands.  The VAT is often reverse-charged to the person receiving the service. Therefore you only pay the Dutch VAT if you supply a service in the Netherlands and if the VAT cannot be reverse-charged to your client.

VAT related to purchase and sales of Products

You will be involved in VAT both in the purchase and sale of goods. You can:

  • purchase goods in the Netherlands

  • import from EU countries into the Netherlands

  • import from non-EU countries into the Netherlands

  • sell goods to clients in the Netherlands

  • export from the Netherlands to other EU countries

  • export from the Netherlands to non-EU countries

Also file VAT return in case of no turnover | If you have an active VAT number

You have to calculate yourself how much VAT you have to pay for things in your company, and you have to state this amount yourself. Even if you have not made any turnover in a period or do not have to pay VAT, you still have to make a declaration.


If you do not file a tax return, you will receive a supplementary tax assessment in which the Tax Authorities themselves estimate the amount. A fine can also be imposed.

Inco Business GroupToolkit



Our experts have combined their knowledge and strengths to create a tool we call the Business Toolkit

The Business Toolkit will help you and entrepreneurs from around the globe to truly understand the Dutch market, regulations and laws. And will enable you to take a deep-dive the many business-related topics.

This way you will easily get up to speed with our Company formation process, Dutch Accounting and our corporate services. 

Make sure to check out our handy checklists, explainer video's and extensively written Whitepapers too!