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The Netherlands: Reduced VAT rate for tours in soccer stadium

A Netherlands resident limited partnership undertakes the exploitation of a sporting complex. The complex consists out of a stadium, accompanying facilities and a museum. The taxpayer organises inter alia events consisting out of a tour through the stadium and a visit to the museum (within the stadium). With respect to the tours the taxpayers applies the reduced VAT rate of 6%. The tax authorities did not agree with the application of the reduced rate to these tours. The Court of First Instance of Haarlem confirmed the view of the tax authorities. However, the Court of Appeal of ?s-Hertogenbosch held for the taxpayer on the basis that the intention of the legislator had been to apply the reduced VAT rate to a variety of recreational activities. Now that all activities in the stadium are undertaken with a view towards recreation and leisure the Court held that the stadium primarily can be regarded as a service meant for entertainment and day trips. The Court held that this also applies to the tours, and that therefore they are subject to the reduced VAT rate of 6%.

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