On 28th of September a group of expert industry leaders under auspices of the german Institute for Digitalization in Tax Law (IDSt) published a joint letter opposing introducing a federal e-invoicing mandate in its currently planned form.
Primary concern voiced pertains to a proposed exclusion of major UN/EDIFACT document interchange formats that had been widely used in Germany in past 20 years in favor of promoting new EN 16931 format.
According to IDSt letter such exclusion will lead to generation of immense transition costs throughout all of Germany’s industries. What is more, it is feared, that a whole swathe of highly adapted and industry specific functionalities, that are simply nonexistent in the upcoming format.
Importantly, such format exclusion is not required by future EU ViDA regulations aimed at standardizing VAT reporting across European Union. As such, it is feared German companies might be at an disadvantage in comparison with foreign entities still able to exchange documents in proven, time tested manner.
Emphasizing, that there are no discernable differences in susceptibility to fraud between the UN/EDIFACT and EN 16931 formats, the Institute urges lawmakers to allow for the former’s continued use as a permissible alternative upon business partners’ agreement.