Main changes introduced in Special Taxes Regulations by Royal Decree 1512/2018

  1. The withdrawal of the autonomous community tax rates for Hydrocarbons Tax from 1 January 2019, has led to:

    • The removal of the "forwarding agent" concept included in number 13 of article 1 of the Regulation on Special Taxes.

    • The removal of section 8 of article 13 regarding the issuance of products by a tax warehouse at an autonomous community tax rate destined for other autonomous communities.

    • The removal of article 13.bis regulating the registration of forwarding agents in the territorial registry and the self-assessments they were required to file.

    • The modification of section 1 of article 18 and the removal of section 6, taking away any reference to how autonomous community tax rates are charged.

    • The modification of sections 3 and 5 of article 44, removing the references to forwarding agents, in relation to the self-assessments and statements of operations.

  2. The text of letters c) and d) of section 2 of article 11 on tax warehouses is modified to clarify the following:

    • In the second paragraph of letter c), that products which were taxed at the full rate and later returned to their owner can be stored in the defined area of the premises authorised by the special taxes management office as outside the warehouse (the previous wording referred to all products subject to the tax).

    • In letter d), that the storage deposits for bulk liquids at tax warehouses must have the minimum storage capacity required by the special taxes management office.

  3. Section 5 of article 15 is modified to state that losses will not be deemed to have been incurred in a tax warehouse or deposit unless this is entered in the corresponding quarterly accounting cut-off (the previous wording referred to the close of each settlement period).

  4. Point 1, letter b) of section 3, article 19; section 7 of article 39; and section 4 of article 45 are modified to make reference to the fact that rolling tobacco is also subject to the requirement that containers or packaging must have a tax stamp.

  5. Article 26 is modified, as follows:

    • Rolling tobacco is included in the list of products requiring tax stamps.

    • In the case of containers for alcoholic beverages, the tax stamp must be stuck with adhesive to the neck of the bottle.

    • It is no longer mandatory to include in the electronic security code on alcoholic beverage seals any details regarding establishments other than the establishment to which they are delivered.

    • It is specified that for the sale of cigarettes and rolling tobacco to persons travelling to EU countries or third countries, the tax stamps must be stuck on with indelible adhesive to the outside of the authorised packaging.

    • It is specified that the guarantee under which the seals were delivered will be responsible for all the tax obligations deriving from the application of this article, including payment of charges resulting from settlements made.

    • In the case of imports of alcoholic beverages, cigarettes and rolling tobacco, the option for tax stamps to be added at the customs office of import is removed.

    • It is determined that it is optional for establishments to record tax stamps via the Tax Agency's E-Office.

  6. Article 27, on en-route sales, is modified as follows:

    • In section 1, the option is included to send products by en-route sales procedures to the premises of the consignor, where the product is received for subsequent forwarding to the end customer address.

    • Letter d) section 2 specifies that products dispatched for en-route sales which are returned to the source establishment must be returned within two working days of dispatch (in the previous version it was three calendar days after dispatch).

    • Section 3 is extended to state that, for aircraft, the management office may authorise en-route sales for provisioning of exempt goods.

    • In letter b) of section 4, regarding notification of inability to electronically file the draft circulation notice, the option is included that if the consignor keeps automated, auditable records through which it can be proven that they were unable to file the draft, this will be accepted as notification.

  7. The title of article 37 is changed to "Circulation in certain special cases" (formerly "circulation by fixed pipeline)"

    A paragraph is added to regulate circulation in the case of fuel supplies to aircraft by intervention of tax warehouse owners operating in Spanish airports.

  8. Section 3 is added to article 38 establishing that any gaseous products that, for physical and/or chemical reasons, could not be fully extracted from their containers, will be deemed undeliverable for causes unattributable to the authorised consignor.

  9. Letter d) section 2 of article 40 is modified to state that products for which tax was charged at the full rate and which were subsequently returned to the owner, may be stored in the specified area of the premises in which the factory is installed, which the management office may authorise as outside the premises [similarly to article 11.2.c) regarding tax warehouses].

  10. Number 1, letter b), section 2; and number 1, letter b), section 7 of article 43 are modified to state that guarantees over alcohol factories and registered alcohol recipients may not be over 20,000,000 euros.

  11. Article 50 is modified to state that from 1 January 2020 (as established by Final Provision Four of Royal Decree 1512/2018), owners of factories, tax deposits, holding areas, tax warehouses and vinegar factories, must record their accounts through the Tax Agency's E-Office.

    Other parties obligated to record their accounts can opt to do so via the E-Office.

    The Ministry of Finance and Public Service is empowered to deal with all areas in relation to the Regulations for this recording of accounts on the E-Office.

    The recording of accounts not done through the E-Office is also regulated.

  12. A section 6 is added to article 60, establishing a series of accounting simplifications that the management office may authorise, at the request of the interested parties, in the case of beer factories with an annual production of under 5,000 hectolitres.

  13. Section 2 is modified and section 3 is added to article 61, establishing regulatory percentages for losses different to those established in section 1 of this article, for beer factories with an annual production of under 5,000 hectolitres.

  14. Section 4 of article 88 is modified to clarify that the automatic offsetting referred to in this section regarding quotas for alcohol and alcoholic beverages used to obtain flavourings, shall only apply when these flavourings are from a factory that manufactures extracts and is registered as such on the corresponding regional registry.

  15. Section 1 of article 101 is modified to include the possibility of tax-exempt aircraft fuelling by means of en-route procedures.

  16. A section 5 is added to article 103, stating that the (new) exemption established in letter c) section 2 of article 51 of the Special Taxes Act, must be requested in advance from the management office by the owners of power plants or combined electricity cogeneration plants and useful heat energy plants, and authorised by the said management office subject to registration in the corresponding regional registry.

  17. Letter a) of section 4, article 106 is modified to state that certification as an end consumer of subsidised diesel oil, as well as the form approved by the Ministry of Finance, can be documented electronically or by hard copy.

  18. Letter c) is added to section 1 of article 108 to specify that end consumers of products sold at reduced tax rates, other than diesel fuel in section 1.4, shall not be subject to the requirements of letter a) in section 4 or article 106 (which requires prior declaration as an end consumer).

    Section 8 is removed, which established that end consumers of diesel fuel to whom the reduced rate stated in section 1.16 of article 50 of the (since withdrawn) Law, should register with the regional registry.

  19. A modification is made to article 108 on authorisation for mixing of hydrocarbons in an excise duty suspension arrangement, broadening the scope of application thereof.

    • These products can be destined for tax warehouses or factories.

    • Authorisation may also be given for products that were stored in a factory or tax warehouse to be mixed on board a vessel that is transporting these mixes.

  20. Section 3 of article 123.bis is modified to state that if tobacco products sold in a tax-free shop include cigarettes or rolling tobacco, the packaging must contain tax stamp stickers as described in article 26, and these should under no circumstances be removed or destroyed upon leaving the territory.

  21. Article 138 is modified to include the obligation to register with the regional registry for parties eligible for exemptions and the reduced Coal tax rate.

  22. Section 1 of article 141 is modified to state that end consumers of coal to whom the reduced tax rate is applied must be registered in the regional registry, and in section 3 of this same article the reference to cogeneration power plants and useful heat energy plants is removed, since these are the only cases in which the reduced Coal tax rate applies.

  23. Article 141.bis entitled "application of exemptions" is added, stating that beneficiaries of exemptions must present to whomever they make their first sale and delivery of coal, their certification card proving their registry with the regional registry. It is also stated that these beneficiaries must keep all certification documentation regarding the eligibility for exemption throughout the entire period.

  24. A third temporary provision is added to the Regulations stating that cigarettes or rolling tobacco manufactured or imported in the EU before 20 May 2019, the packaging of which does not contain tax stamps with the required security measures can remain in circulation until 20 May 2020.

  25. The Sole Additional Provision of Royal Decree 1512/2018 states that tax-free shops (defined in article 4.31 of Law 38/1992 of 28 December, on Special Taxes) should be located in an area under customs control in ports or airports between the boarding, transit or arrivals areas and access security and/or passport control.

    It also states that these shops should be authorised but not in the same way as customs and/or customs warehouses, in relation to the goods statutes, without prejudice to the tax obligations of Special Taxes regulations.

  26. Final Provision Four of Royal Decree 1512/2018 states that:

    • All regulations regarding tax stamps on rolling tobacco products will be enforced from 20 May 2019.

    • The requirements regarding the electronic security code on tax stamps for alcoholic beverages will be enforced from 1 January 2020.

    • The modifications introduced in the en-route sales system (article 27) and in tax-free refuelling of aircraft and vessels (articles 101 and 102), or in diesel refuelling of boats with tax refund entitlement (article 110), shall be enforced from 1 July 2019.

    • The modifications in article 50 regarding accounting controls will be mandatory from 1 January 2020.

    • The requirements set forth in section 12 of article 26 regarding the activation of security codes for tax stamps on alcoholic beverages corresponding to containers or packaging whose excise duty suspension arrangement is being finalised, will be mandatory from 1 January 2022.