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How does Value Added Tax (VAT) work at the point of sale?

The Value Added Tax (VAT) will come into force as of 1 January 2013 and it is important that consumers are aware of what will happen when VAT kicks in. They need to know who can charge them VAT, on what goods and services they will have to pay VAT and what they should expect at the point of sale when they pay for their goods and services.

Who can charge VAT to consumers?
Consumers must be aware that under the Value Added Tax only VAT registered businesses are allowed to charge VAT on the sales of their goods and services. Non-VAT registered businesses cannot charge VAT to anyone. It is important therefore that consumers are able to identify who those VAT registered businesses are.

The following are the various ways a consumer can identify which businesses/shops are registered for VAT:
  1. SRC will issue all VAT registered businesses with a VAT certificate (see the sample on the right) that they will need to place in a prominent area at their place of business. In other words a consumer must be able to easily see the VAT certificate.
  2. In addition, all VAT registered retailers will also visibly display a VAT sticker outside their shop denoting that the shop is VAT registered.
  3. Moreover, the list of VAT registered businesses will be made available on SRC website (www.src.gov.sc) for those who want to verify the list of registered businesses.
  4. For those still in doubt they can always contact SRC to verify if a business is registered for VAT or not.
How to identify if businesses/retailers have charged VAT on their sale?
It is illegal for non-VAT registered businesses to charge VAT on their sales. This is why it is a requirement under the VAT Act that all VAT registered businesses issue consumers with a receipt for each sale. This way consumers can verify whether they have been charged the 15% VAT or not on their purchases.

It is the responsibility of each consumer to make sure that they first of all get a receipt when they make a purchase and secondly that they check their receipt to see whether they have been charged the 15% VAT. The receipt, as shown in the sample on the right, should show the following information:
  • The date of the sale/transaction
  • The description, quantity and price/unit of the items
  • The price without VAT
  • The sub-total without VAT
  • The total amount of VAT charged
  • The total amount to be paid including VAT
N:B: VAT should not be charged on exempted goods and services even if the business is registered for VAT. Therefore, consumers need to make themselves acquainted with the exempted list of goods and supplies. The list will be published in the newspaper, aired on TV, posted on our website, listed in leaflets found at our offices and other outlets and displayed in posters in the shops.

In the case of business to business transactions and in accordance with the VAT Act 2010, a VAT registered business must provide another VAT registered business with a VAT invoice at the point of sale.

A VAT invoice (see sample on the right) must display the following specific information:
  • VAT invoice clearly indicated in a prominent or visible space
  • the name, address and TIN of the supplier
  • the name , business name, physical address
  • the serial number of the invoice
  • a sufficient description to identify the goods or services supplied to the customer
  • the total price excluding VAT
  • the amount of VAT applicable to the sales
  • the total price including VAT
  • the date of issuance


For more information
You can contact Seychelles Revenue Commission on hotline number 4293745 or email us at vat@src.gov.sc for more information about VAT.
The Value Added Tax Act, 2010 and all VAT related information is available here.
There will also be a series of small programs in the media especially designed to sensitize and educate consumers about VAT.


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