VAT Consulting AG

Theaterstrasse 18

CH-4051 Basel
Phone: +41 (0) 61 225 90 50
Fax: +41 (0) 61 225 90 51

8.3 Exemptions with right to deduction (zero rate)

The following supplies are zero rated (VAT exempt with right of deduction):


  • export of goods;
  • leasing or chartering of goods which are transported or dispatched directly abroad and are used by the recipient of the delivery predominantly abroad;
  • supply of goods which are under customs control in Switzerland (e.g. goods under a transit procedure, a bonded warehouse procedure or a temporary customs procedure);
  • supply of goods which are stored in a bonded warehouse;
  • transport or dispatch of goods in connection with the import of goods;
  • transport or dispatch of goods in connection with the export of goods;
  • rendering of transport services and ancillary logistic activities, such as loading, unloading, trans- shipment, clearing or temporary warehousing, abroad or in connection with goods that are under customs control;
  • international flight and related services;
  • services of intermediaries acting expressly in the name of and for account of others, if the brokered supply is either exempt from the tax under this article or is effected exclusively abroad; and
  • services rendered in their own name by travel agents and organisers of events, to the extent they draw on deliveries and services of third parties, which are effected by them abroad.


Under the current VAT Law the exporter can supply any evidence in order to prove that the goods supplied have been exported. There is no legal obligation anymore to furnish an (electronic) export declaration issued by the customs authorities. However, the export declaration is still taken as the most appropriate proof that the goods have left Switzerland.


The tax exemption for goods bought by tourists is only possible if all of the following conditions are met:


  • retail price of the goods must be at least CHF 300.- (including VAT). However, the retail price excluding VAT has to be indicated in the export document;
  • customer may not be domiciled in Switzerland (cf. Art. 3 lit. a VAT Law). Contrary, it is irrelevant whether the customer is a Swiss or foreign national;
  • goods must be intended for the personal use of the customer or as gifts;
  • goods must be exported to a foreign customs territory by the customer within thirty days of receipt;
  • proof of exportation can be provided either with a confirmed export document or with an unconfirmed export document together with an import assessment issued by a foreign customs authority; and
  • the export document must be drawn up in the name of the customer and may contain solely goods supplied to this person. Joint declarations with goods for various customers are not permitted.


If one or more of the mentioned conditions are not met, the supplier must tax the goods supplied.


Forms no. 11.49 and no. 11.49 [A] remain valid, but they are no longer printed. Instead, the FTA has drafted a sample export document, which can be downloaded from its website.


Copyright: VAT Consulting AG


Vorherige Seite     Nächste Seite