The German Value Added Tax Law (Umsatzsteuergesetz – UStG)
covers the following transactions which are within the scope of
– Supplies of goods (Lieferungen) and services (Dienstleistun-
gen) which a business delivers or renders for consideration
(monetary or non-monetary) within Germany (this does not
include the island of Helgoland, the Swiss enclave of Buesin-
gen and German free ports; however, there are exceptions
related to German free ports where such supplies are treated
like transactions made in Germany).
– The following supplies of goods and services are treated for
no consideration to the extent that the business providing
the goods or services operates in Germany or such goods or
services are provided from a fxed establishment located in
– Withdrawal or use of business assets for purposes other
than the business of the company.
– Supply or use of business assets for private use of staff,
with the exception of appropriate gifts of small value.
– Supply of goods also for business purposes, with the
exception of gifts of small value and samples.
– Even if input VAT has not been deducted in preceding stag-
es (!): other services for no consideration for non-business
purposes as well as for private use of staff, with the excep-
tion of appropriate gifts of small value.
– The importation of goods from territories outside the EU
into Germany is subject to German import turnover tax (Ein-
– Movements of goods into Germany from another territory
within the EU are subject to acquisition VAT (Besteuerung des
It should be noted that, as long as certain criteria are met, the
transfer of a business as a going concern is not normally regard-
ed as a taxable transaction.