In the EU, local Tax Authorities don't deliver formal certification/authorization letter to eInvoicing Solution Providers like Ariba. Tax Authorities can deliver comfort letters to Tax Persons (Buyer company and Supplier company) when a Tax Person plans to use an externalized service to exchange (create or receive) paperless VAT invoices. I've joined a model of letter that an Ariba customer has sent to a local European TA.  However, comfort letters or certificates from tax consultants cannot bind tax authorities. The Ariba perspective about comfort letters and certifications aligns to that of our partners TrustWeaver and KPMG in this regards.


Since Tax Authorities do don't deliver formal certification, the country guide is the most important aspect our approach.  Ariba now has KPGM write and sign the country specific chapters of the Country Guide. 


What is the “COUNTRY GUIDE”?


The purpose of this document is to enable users of Ariba Supplier Network and Ariba Invoice to easily determine how electronic invoicing regulations impact Tax/VAT compliance operations, and to demonstrate and document the process flows and specific ways in which the Ariba Solution conforms to these regulations - a paperless, dematerialized approach to the entire invoice process. This document summarizes information collected by Ariba. The most recent version of the document includes 12 country specific updates or additions made in 2009. This version marks an important new development of the Country Guide.  The above additions and updates were written and signed by KPMG!  We included the "sign-off" at the end of each country specific chapter.  You may be asking...


What’s KPMG’s role in the development of this document? 


KPMG advises Ariba on Ariba's interpretation of tax related invoice requirements and, where needed, suggests adaptations to the Ariba electronic invoicing solution to comply in countries around the world.


In practice, KPMG analyzes e-invoicing legislation applicable for the specific country in regards to domestic trade and cross-border/intra-EU (if applicable). To this aim, KPMG helps Ariba provide to each of our end customers (buyers and suppliers) this “Guide for creating VAT-compliant electronic invoices” which summarizes the VAT legislation applicable in their country regarding electronic invoices and a summary of the technical process used by Ariba to achieve these requirements.  Depending on the tax complexity and acceptance of eInvoicing in any given geography, KPMG may produce any of the following deliverables: 

·        Completion of “ARIBA VAT Country Questionnaire” - KPMG correspondents in each requested country completes a jointly defined TAX questionnaire.

·        Drafting the customer facing document – KPMG may draft a country specific section of the “Guide for creating VAT-compliant electronic invoices” which is a customer facing document.

·        Sign-off the customer facing document - Upon Ariba request, a local VAT specialist of the KPMG VAT network signs-off a letter  where they will indicate that they have personally reviewed the “Country Review” section of the “Guide” and provided the information requested in accordance with the VAT legislation of each country.

·        Update - On a periodic bases or upon request, KPMG may update the advices received on electronic invoicing rules in each country and confirm whether the previous advices are still relevant. 

·        SIGN-OFF OF THE ARIBA’S SOLUTION FROM A VAT PERSPECTIVE - Upon request, KPMG may examine whether the Ariba Solution is compliant with the country legislation of the requested country.  In practice, the purpose of this work is to indicate to Ariba whether in this part there are Ariba Solutions features which should be changed to be adapted to the local legislation.

·        CUSTOMER SPECIFIC QUERIES – There may be situations where buyers or supplier need additional tax assistance beyond our current documentation or where tax rules rulings are particularly ambiguous.  Where appropriate and needed, Ariba may schedule meetings between customer and KPMG.


NOTE: Ariba maintains a prioritized list of countries requiring KPMG tax review. This list is built in consultation with Sales and Network Account Managers who have knowledge of current supplier enablement priorities across our customer base. Naturally the countries with most customer requests are at the top of the list.


Since buyers and suppliers remain responsible for their tax-relevant processes in case of doubt they should liaise with its local tax experts to review the offered solution