E-invoicing in Saudi Arabia: A guide to keeping your business prepared
What is e-invoicing?
E-invoicing is the process of generating invoices in a digital format, so you can issue and store them electronically. The Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority (ZATCA) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has rolled out regulations mandating businesses to adopt an e-invoicing process in two phases, starting on December 4, 2021.
For KSA VAT taxpayers, e-invoices will resemble the VAT tax invoices that are generally issued, but will be generated through an online system. Do note that a paper invoice that is copied or scanned is not considered an e-invoice.
Once issued, an e-invoice cannot be edited. However, you can issue electronic notes (debit and credit notes that are VAT compliant and issued through an electronic system). These should be issued with reference to the original invoice that was issued. For instance, if your buyer has returned your product, you cannot alter the original invoice, but you can issue a credit note through the e-invoicing system. All of your invoicing and note issuing transactions will have to be done through the same e-invoicing system, and must be compliant with ZATCA’s regulations. This standardizes the way transactions are made, ensuring that everything is done uniformly and information is stored securely.
You will have to issue e-invoices for sales made within the country, exports made from KSA to other countries, and goods and services for which you have received advanced payments. E-invoices are not required for supplies exempted from VAT and payments related to them, imports entering KSA, or supplies that are subject to reverse charge mechanism.
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