VAT is an important component of taxation throughout European countries and beyond. It is important that operators understand the correct VAT treatment applicable to their activities, the circumstances in which refunds may be obtained, and the procedures that they should follow.

Within the EU, the rules concerning VAT systems are harmonised although there is leeway for individual interpretation of some of the general rules.

An international haulage operator cannot recover VAT paid in another EU Member State as input tax on the UK VAT return, but it may be possible to obtain its refund if the necessary eligibility criteria are met.

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