Indirect taxes and global trade

In recent years, issues related to managing indirect taxes — such as VAT, GST, customs and excise duties — have risen on the corporate agenda.

        What EY can do for you

        Knowing the indirect tax rules for your business operations and applying them correctly are key to avoid assessments, penalties and goods blocked on airports, harbors, roads, etc. Taxpayers and tax administrators do not always agree about the rules. Complex local legislation, evolving business models and widely different compliance obligations in different jurisdictions add to the risk of disagreements.

        We can advise you on the steps to take to strategically meet your tax obligations and resolve tax controversy. We foster an open dialogue with customs authorities, government officials, business partners and other stakeholders about customs and international trade issues, the impact of policy decisions and the importance of free trade.

        EY Trade Analytics

          The latest edition of TradeWatch, issue 2, 2020 is out now

          TradeWatch (pdf), issue 2, 2020 outlines key legislative and administrative developments for customs and trade around the world. This issue comes in an interactive and easy to share format, with links to articles on and to other EY resources, interactive graphics and maps. The publication includes sections on insights, technology and tax alerts and a separate section dedicated to news and insights on the COVID-19 and global trade including links to our regularly updated global trade tracker that monitors how governments are changing global trade rules in response to the pandemic.  

          What‘s the latest in global trade?

          In this issue we look at developments around the world and we shine a spotlight on how COVID-19 is affecting global trade policy and how trade analytics can provide companies with the transparency they need to take the informed decisions necessary to navigate through the current disruption.

          TradeWatch (pdf) includes the following insights:


          • New Harmonized System 2022 edition: preparing for change
          • Why trade disputes are reshuffling supply chains and transfer pricing
          • Why the global trade function means more than moving goods from A to B


          • Brazil: Supreme Court rules the Siscomex fee increase unconstitutional and makes refunds
          • US-China trade tariff mitigation strategies remain critical for companies in turbulent times
          • USMCA: The United States, Mexico and Canada prepare for a 1 July entry into force of the USMCA — impact on the trade in goods
          • US: Court clarifies treatment of related party trademark royalties and payments for services
          • US: Court of international trade invalidates US Customs regulation restricting excise tax drawback
          • US: New country of origin reporting requirement on composite goods could have broad compliance and operational impacts
          • US: Sanctions agency highlights compliance essentials and high-risk industries with recent enforcement trends
          • US: Texas Supreme Court defers to US Customs determination of “activation” in foreign trade zone property tax dispute


          • China: Draft Export Control Law and implications for business
          • Japan: Annual report on post-entry customs
          • Japan: US-Japan Trade Agreement entered into force
          • Korea: Developments and changes to free trade agreements
          • Korea: Changes to the customs system
          • Malaysia: Open market value for excise duty purposes in the automotive industry
          • Philippines: Update on Post Clearance Audit and the Prior Disclosure Program
          • Thailand: Customs valuation implication of the new transfer pricing disclosure requirements

          Europe, Middle East, India and Africa

          • EU: New tools to enforce rights in international trade and trade war countermeasures
          • EU: Revamp of EU Excise Directive
          • GCC: How to navigate global trade controversy and disputes
          • Saudi Arabia: Compliance with product conformity obligations now easier and faster
          • South Africa: The treatment of retroactive transfer pricing adjustments by the South African Revenue Service
          • UK: Brexit update

          Technology articles in this issue cover:

          • EY trade analytics — visibility is key
          • How technology can help you manage trade disruption and navigate the challenges of COVID-19
          • The power of technology in global trade: webcast series recordings
          • Certifying Origin: Global trade in a changing world — webcast recording from the EY Global Blockchain Summit 2020

          A round up of EY Global Tax Alerts related to global trade matters are presented using an interactive map display.

          COVID-19 articles in this issue cover:

          • How COVID-19 is affecting customs and excise taxes: a trade tracker
          • How real-time satellite data is keeping supply chains moving
          • Global trade webcast recordings
            • How ports and shipping keep goods moving as the world stands still
            • COVID-19: Beyond headline legal, people and trade stimulus measures
            • COVID-19: How global trade finance is being disrupted and redefined
          • US: Trade levers in the time of COVID-19
          • Canada: Why are importers facing challenges in benefiting from the COVID-19 duty and tax deferral measures?
          • Insights on the impact of COVID-19 trade policies in Asia-Pacific
          • Italy: Customs measures and opportunities in response to COVID-19
          • India: Trade policy scenario in post COVID-19 era
          • South Africa: Customs and excise relief measures in the time of COVID-19

          A round up of EY Global Tax Alerts related to both global trade matters and COVID-19 measures are presented using an interactive map display.

          Why TradeWatch?

          In today's global economy, moving goods internationally can be a complex and costly activity. TradeWatch (pdf) provides timely information about customs and international trade developments to help our clients develop strategies to manage duty costs and the risks of global trade, to improve trade compliance and to increase the operational effectiveness of international supply chains.

          Learn from an expert

          EY Global Trade Manager, Martijn Schippers, explains the impact of INCOTERMS® on taxes.

          Listen to podcast

          Managing indirect tax evolution

          Our new Global Indirect Tax thought leadership report, sets out why indirect tax is becoming the “go-to” tax. @EY_Tax

          Find out more


          Our interactive, quarterly newsletter brings updates and insights on customs and trade matters worldwide.

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          Contact us

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