Since 1 January 2019 foreign electronic service providers must issue electronic invoices, a type of e-invoice, for sales of electronic services to individual buyers in Taiwan. Alongside this, Taiwan’s local tax authorities have been introducing incentives for domestic taxpayers to implement e-invoicing despite not being a mandatory requirement.
Before diving into the details of the e-invoicing system in Taiwan, we’ll discuss the Government Uniform Invoice (GUI), which the e-invoicing system is based on Government Uniform Invoices.
What is a Government Uniform Invoice (GUI)?
The government uniform invoice is a standard VAT invoice governed and pre-numbered by the tax authorities in Taiwan. All business entities must issue GUIs for all sales of goods and services subject to VAT, except for any legal exemptions.
Taxpayers can issue GUIs once following business registration approval by the local competent tax authority in Taiwan. Taxpayers can issue different types of GUIs including paper-based GUIs and Electronic Government Uniform Invoices (eGUIs) as well.
What is an eGUI?
eGUIs are a type of GUI issued, transmitted, or obtained via the internet or other electronic means.
Issuing an eGUI is mandatory for foreign electronic service providers who sell electronic services to individuals in Taiwan as of 1 January 2019. However, issuing eGUIs for B2B, B2C and B2G transactions is optional for the broader economy, including domestic taxpayers in Taiwan.
How are eGUIs issued?
Business entities in Taiwan must use a sequential track number called the electronic invoice track number (eGUI number for short) in their electronic invoices. Business entities must apply to the local tax authority to have eGUI numbers assigned.
The e-invoice issuance process requires the use of these eGUI numbers and must comply with MIG 3.2.1 based on an XML format provided by the tax authority.
Following the issuance of an electronic uniform invoice, businesses have 48 hours to upload the invoice information to the tax authority platform for B2C transactions and seven days for B2B transactions This model is known as continuous transaction controls (CTCs), whereby the tax authorities receive transactional information from taxpayers in real time or near-real time.
Business entities can appoint a certified e-invoicing service provider, also known as value-added centers, to issue and transmit uniform invoices electronically.
What’s next for Taiwan’s tax system?
Taiwanese authorities have encouraged electronic invoicing for many years. As a result, more and more businesses have started issuing eGUIs.
The requirement to issue e-invoices for foreign electronic service providers has played an important role in the widespread adoption of e-invoicing throughout the country. While it’s clear Taiwan has come a long way in terms of the digitalization of e-invoicing processes, paper-based invoices can still be issued according to Taiwanese regulations.
We’ll monitor developments in the future to see whether the mandatory implementation of e-invoicing will be extended to the broader economy in Taiwan.
Need more information about e-invoicing in Taiwan?
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