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Old 04-01-2013, 05:28   #1
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Buying sails in Europe

We have recently purchased a Beneteau 47.7 in Europe and have had the boat entered into Australian Registry. We are currently in Sicily and wanting to purchase a new spectra laminate head'sl. We have a very open cruising plan, the rough idea being to leave Europe in November heading for the BVI. Does anyone have experience with VAT (IVA?) issues when buying new sails?
Roger Corrie
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:44   #2
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Re: Buying sails in Europe

Do you need the sail for the passage? While the BVI is quite expensive, there are excellent sail lofts in St. Martin whose prices will be lower than buying from the same company in Europe - even after taking the VAT off.

If you wish to buy in Europe, the sailmakers will make an appropriate invoice and you will pay the Vat, which when you clear out and provide proof that the goods are being exported will be reimbursed to you.

Even easier is having the sailmaker drop-ship to St. Martin; I don't recall the name of the shipping company I used but I shipped about 200Kg of PELI-Cases with contents for about 150Euro plus a US$10 pickup fee at the shipping agent. This way the sailmaker exports themselves and VAT is not due or paid and you don't have to pay in advance plus don't have the sails aboard taking space if you don't need it.
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:34   #3
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Re: Buying sails in Europe

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zanshin View Post
Do you need the sail for the passage? While the BVI is quite expensive, there are excellent sail lofts in St. Martin whose prices will be lower than buying from the same company in Europe - even after taking the VAT off.

If you wish to buy in Europe, the sailmakers will make an appropriate invoice and you will pay the Vat, which when you clear out and provide proof that the goods are being exported will be reimbursed to you.

Even easier is having the sailmaker drop-ship to St. Martin; I don't recall the name of the shipping company I used but I shipped about 200Kg of PELI-Cases with contents for about 150Euro plus a US$10 pickup fee at the shipping agent. This way the sailmaker exports themselves and VAT is not due or paid and you don't have to pay in advance plus don't have the sails aboard taking space if you don't need it.

There is no "system" of providing VAT returns, customs officials for example do not provide VAT refunds on export. You can try to reclaim VAT when you arrive in Australia, from the supplier. as its his VAT you need to reclaim.

Organised VAT returns systems you see in shopping malls and airports are different and only work with designated stores.

You also must export the item with 90 days, and you must show that it is actually exported , ie an import stamp at the other end. Merely turning up at customs will get you laughed at.

What you can do, is try and convince the seller to zero rate the sale as you are leaving. Or as part of the deal, agree that they will refund the VAT when you provide them with documentatry evidence that the sails have been exported. Often the seller will take the VAT in the form of a bond , and return it to you on proof of export. This is actually the way VAT authorities want it done.

Dave
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Old 06-01-2013, 03:50   #4
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Re: Buying sails in Europe

Thanks for the input guys. Ideally we would order the sail now and have it aboard when we leave Italy for Spain in May. The boat will then go to Gibralter in July and spend about 4 months there before we head off across the Atlantic. Would it be smarter to have the sailmaker ship it to the boat in Gibralter?
Also I see on the Rolly Tasker web site that they are suggesting "yachts in transit" are exempt from VAT if registered elsewhere and that they simply ship sails directly from their loft in Thailand. Does this really work?
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Old 08-01-2013, 18:07   #5
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Re: Buying sails in Europe

Roger,

We routinely ship sails worldwide. I'll send you a PM.
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Old 08-01-2013, 18:24   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Corrie
Thanks for the input guys. Ideally we would order the sail now and have it aboard when we leave Italy for Spain in May. The boat will then go to Gibralter in July and spend about 4 months there before we head off across the Atlantic. Would it be smarter to have the sailmaker ship it to the boat in Gibralter?
Also I see on the Rolly Tasker web site that they are suggesting "yachts in transit" are exempt from VAT if registered elsewhere and that they simply ship sails directly from their loft in Thailand. Does this really work?
No. It does not you will pay on import into the EU. There is no exemption for a leisure yacht " in transit " however Gib is outside the customs terrority. So you can buy it there VaT free ( or have it delivered there )

Dave
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