Revenue Note for Guidance

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Revenue Note for Guidance

37. General rules on taxable amount


This section sets out the general rules on the taxable amount in respect of the various transactions liable to tax. In general, tax is payable on the full amount payable to the supplier, excluding the tax itself, but including any ancillary charges made, such as additions for packing, transport, etc.


(1) In the case of supplies of goods or services for consideration by a taxable person in the State, the core rule is that tax is payable on the full consideration, excluding VAT itself, but including all other commissions, costs, charges, etc.

(2) The rule for supplies within the State also applies in the case of intra-Community acquisitions (ICAs) –VAT is chargeable on the full consideration, excluding the VAT itself.

(3) In barter transactions, or in transactions in which the consideration is not stated wholly in terms of money for supplies of goods, services or ICAs, tax is payable by reference to what might reasonably be expected to be the open-market (arm’s length) price of the goods or services supplied.

(4) The exchange rates to be used in converting foreign currency invoices in the case of supplies or ICAs is set out in subsection (4). Note that:

-in the case of goods liable to VAT on importation, conversion of foreign currency invoices is carried out in accordance with customs rules – section 53 refers.

-in the case of supplies to which the special schemes for telecommunications, broadcasting and e-services are applied – sections 91C(5) and 91E(5) refer.

  • (4)(a) The basic rule is that the latest selling rate for the foreign currency recorded by the Central Bank of Ireland or the European Central Bank at the time tax becomes due should be used. In practice, rates for most major currencies are published daily.
  • (4)(b) With Revenue’s agreement, traders may use an alternative method of determining the exchange rate. This is intended to cover situations where, for example, a company uses a monthly rate for its own company transactions and wishes to use this rate also for VAT purposes. Where a trader agrees an alternative method of determining the exchange rate with Revenue, that method must be used for all transactions showing currencies other than the Euro until such agreement is withdrawn by Revenue.

Relevant Date: Finance Act 2020