VAT Neutrality

1re édition 2015

Charlène Adline Herbain

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Most major economies use a value added tax (VAT) which is a derivation of the French 1954 taxe sur la valeur ajoutée. The initial imposition of VAT in France and its spread around the world have been driven by economic reasons. This book focuses on one of these economic triggers: the neutrality of VAT as regards the functioning of the economy. It demonstrates that the reason VAT was chosen in France and why thereafter it spread around the world was because it offered the possibility to collect governmental revenue while allowing the economic forces of the market to interplay without being adversely affected.
The prerequisite conditions for the existence of VAT neutrality are therefore identified herein along with an overview of the VAT mechanism, demonstrating that the concept of neutrality is built into the VAT system in a manner that allows for the preservation of the natural functioning of the market. After the definition of VAT neutrality is set forth, the elements that comprise VAT neutrality are tested against the realities on the ground and the issues that infringe the neutrality of VAT are identified and analysed. In conclusion, remedies for these issues are being sought by a review of the causes of infringement of VAT neutrality in the perspective of selected proposals for modified VAT systems. These proposals include redesignating the place where VAT is levied and improving VAT collection. Ultimately, the proposed solution has recourse to the roots of VAT together with the most advanced technological tools available to give back to VAT the power to levy revenue while letting the economic forces of the market interplay without instigating any adverse influence.

Version numérique disponible sur :

  • Strada lex Belgique
  • Strada lex Luxembourg

Vous êtes abonné ? Activez gratuitement la version numérique grâce au code présent dans l’ouvrage.


Foreword by Professor André Prüm
List of abbreviations, acronyms and references

Part 1 – The initial impetus for neutrality
Part 2 – The definition of neutrality
Part 3 – The limitations to neutrality

Afterword by Me Jean-Claude Bouchard
List of figures
Bibliography & References

Liste des contributeurs


  • Charlène Adline Herbain : Administratrice à la Commission européenne et chargée de cours à l’UCLouvain

Postface de

  • Jean-Claude Bouchard : Lawyer, Membre of the VAT Expert Group of the European Commission and Lecturer at the Université de Bourgogne

Préface de

  • André Prüm : Professeur à la Faculté de Droit, d'Économie et de Finance de l'Université du Luxembourg







Date de parution

Avril 2015




547 gr.