Serbia has been dealing with the obligation to issue invoices electronically for several years. Even though mandatory electronic invoicing has not yet been implemented for all taxpayers, Serbia has already taken an important step in this direction.
Breaking News: E-invoicing obligation phases in 2022
In January 2022, electronic invoicing will be mandatory in Serbia. Initially, B2G/G2G e-invoicing will have to be used from January 1. Then, on July 1, 2022, the G2B obligation will come into force, and from January 1, 2023, the B2B e-invoicing obligation will be added.
The Serbian system for electronic invoices is called Sistem E-Faktura or SEF. This was developed by the Ministry of Finance in order to be able to send, receive, process, and archive electronic invoices. By law, the use of this platform became mandatory for the public and private sectors.
The SEF is similar to the Sdl system used in Italy and follows the global trend towards Continuous Transaction Control Systems (CTCs). This means that every electronic invoice must be transmitted and prechecked via a platform regulated by the tax authorities.
Three stages are planned for the introduction of the e-invoicing system.
- 1st May 2022: G2G/B2G
- 1st July 2022: G2B
- 1st January 2023: B2B
The path to electronic invoicing
In 2019, Serbia stated that the country would like to take further steps toward digitization. Above all, business processes should be automated and electronic. The aim was to completely abolish paper invoices and, due to the introduction of electronic invoices, to simplify the creation and sending of invoices. This would primarily benefit from cost reductions in the administration and archiving of invoices. Besides, the state authorities wanted to have better insight into the business activities of companies, which would be ensured by the creation of electronic invoices.
A law should then be passed by the end of 2019 that obliges all taxpayers in the procurement sector to issue and send their invoices in electronic form in the future from mid-2021. This would give companies enough time to prepare for the new way of invoicing and to procure the necessary resources for it.
In January 2021, the Ministry of Finance in Serbia issued a guideline containing the provisions regarding electronic invoicing. Generally, an invoice can still be issued in paper form or electronic format.
The following regulations exist:
It is not prescribed how the recipient must give consent, so any method of business communication is acceptable for this purpose.
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