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The project “E-invoice – mandatory electronic invoicing system” was launched in March 2020 by the Ministry of Finance and the National Agency for Tax Administration, with the aim of streamlining the collection of taxes and duties, mainly aimed at improving and strengthening VAT collection and preventing tax evasion.
This system could become mandatory across the board from 1 January 2024 at the earliest for all transactions between companies established in Romania. While now this obligation exists only for those who trade in goods considered as high tax risk and for those who carry out transactions with public institutions, from 1 January 2024 it may become mandatory for all companies.
National legislation clarifying the exact date and method of application is still awaited.
What is electronic invoicing?
An e-Invoice is an invoice issued, transmitted and received in a structured electronic XML format, which allows it to be processed electronically and automatically by the RO e-Invoice system.
How are companies preparing for the e-Invoice changeover?
Step 1: Obtain a qualified digital certificate (e-signature) from authorised providers for issuing qualified digital certificates. This certificate will form the basis for registration in the Virtual Private Space (VPN).
Step 2: Enrolment in the Virtual Private Space, the “place” designated for filing/receiving electronic invoices, and communications from ANAF regarding tax obligations, tax administrative acts, etc. This enrollment in the VPS can only be done in the capacity of legal representative, proxy or designated representative, with the mention that whatever the quality of the enrolled person, he/she will have access to all data issued by ANAF for that taxpayer. For the time being, rights cannot be restricted according to the quality of the depositor.
Step 3: Obtain the right of access to the online tax return filing service by submitting Form 150 via the VPS, or at the counter of the National Tax Administration Agency.
Step 4: For registration in the national e-Invoice system RO e-Invoice in commercial relations with other economic operators (B2B), the Form 084 Application for registration in the RO e-Invoice Register / waiver of application for registration in the RO e-Invoice Register must be completed electronically and submitted online. The form can be completed and submitted by the economic operator or by the processor/legal representative/tax representative. Once this formality has been completed, the economic operator will be entered in the e-Invoice Register as from the 1st of the month following the exercise of the option.
How is the electronic invoice sent via the e-Invoice platform?
The issuing economic operator must prepare the invoice according to the predefined XML format. Afterwards, the issuer will connect to the VPS (Virtual Private Space), access the e-Invoice / Send Invoice section and upload the file to the RO e-Invoice System. And following the upload of this file, they will receive a transaction reference number for further verification.
Given that once the move to e-Invoice is generalised, e-Invoice will become the only copy supporting VAT deduction. It becomes very important to implement e-Invoice from an IT solution perspective in all companies. For those who do not have this possibility, the Ministry of Finance provides a web application for e-Invoice on its website.
How will e-invoice work?
The RO e-Invoice system was created, developed and is administered nationally by the Ministry of Finance.
Under this system, the e-invoice prepared by the issuer in accordance with certain European standards is received, checked and stamped by the Ministry of Finance if it is correctly prepared. Subsequently, the recipient of the invoice is notified by e-mail that he can download the invoice, if he has expressed this notification option.
The date of communication of the e-invoice to the recipient shall be deemed to be the date on which the e-invoice is made available to the recipient for download from the e-Invoice system.
Objections by the recipient to the invoice received may be made by sending a message to the issuer via the e-Invoice system. Corrections on an invoice with the Ministry of Finance seal are no longer allowed, so corrections that will be made will involve issuing other documents, and not modifying those already sent and validated.
What are the advantages for economic operators?
The main disadvantage of using e-Invoice would be the possibility of hindering economic relations, by creating bottlenecks related to delays in reaching the recipients, because the recipient does not receive the invoice until it is verified and confirmed as being in order by the Ministry of Public Finance.
However, it should be possible to automate this process so that invoices can be checked and submitted quickly.
Therefore, there may be significant delays between the time the invoice is sent to the system and the time it is sent to the recipient.