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EU Tax Reporting with Plants Abroad Functionality



  1. One of the challenging things while setting up SAP system in any country is, setting up of Correct Tax System.
  2. European Market is treated as Single Market even though it has 27 independent countries with their own Tax legislations and Tax Rules.
  3. Any company which is doing business in EU, it must have Value Added Tax Registration Number (VAT No.) for that specific European Country, and it must do its business under that country specific Tax Rules and Regulations.


Need of Plants Abroad Functionality:


This functionality is required under following situations:

i. A company is located in any of the European Country (E.g. Luxemburg) and has its Plant / warehouse setup in another European Country (E.g. Germany).




ii. While setting up SAP system, company code will have the address of Company’s Central Location. (i.e., address of LU)

iii. It must reports all its goods movement from or to Germany warehouse with Germany VAT number to Local Tax Authority.

iv. And in Luxemburg, the company must report all its sales and purchases as per LU Legal Regulations with LU VAT number.

v. In this case, it requires to setup two company codes for two VAT numbers, which is not advisable when Business wants to run on same company code.

vi. So, to handle this situation, Plants Abroad functionality will be implemented, where business can be run with single company code but with different VAT numbers.

vii. Plants Abroad functionality is used to handle tax issues for companies that have tax registration in more than one country.

viii. This functionality ensures that correct Value Added Tax (VAT) numbers are printed on the corresponding Purchasing as well as on Sales Documents.

ix. This functionality ensures to fulfill the country specific legal requirements.

Treatment of Goods Movement in Plants Abroad:

Let us see how the following standard business processes are treated differently when Plants Abroad functionality is activated.


A)  Intra Company Stock Transfer

1. Normally for Intra Company Transfers, there will not be any Invoice                       generated, because, it’s shear Stock Transfer between two different locations within the same company code.


2. As there is no transfer of ownership, the invoice generation is not required.

3. The standard Intra Stock Transfer process has the following steps of

                          i.  Intra Company Purchase Order (UB)

                          ii. Replenishment Delivery (NL)

                          iii. Goods Receipt against Purchase Order (MIGO)

                          iv. MIRO against Purchase Order.

4. But when the two Plants / Warehouses are setup in different EU counties, and the stock is moving between them, can be treated as goods movement across borders.

5. As per EU regulations, any goods movement between boarders is need to be reported using INTRASTAT reports.

6. INTRASTAT reports can only be generated using Invoice documents and here in this situation there will not be any invoice generated as this stock transfer is treated as goods movement but not any sales

7. So we can generate a new invoice which is called as  Plants Abroad Invoice, so that,

              i. It can be captured in INTRASTAT, to follow tax regulations.

              ii. As this is ZERO valued invoice, this can be treated as just a goods 

                 movement and not sale.

8. With this implementation, the new Intra Stock Transfer process will be as follows:

                 i. Intra Company Purchase Order (UB)

                 ii. Replenishment Delivery (NL)

                 iii. Goods Receipt against Purchase Order (MIGO)

                 iv. Plants Abroad Invoice (WIA)

                 v. MIRO against Purchase Order.


B)    Consignment Sales Process


1. Consignment Process will have four steps i.e., Consignment Fillup, Consignment Issue, Consignment Return and Consignment Pickup.

2. Out of these four steps, only Consignment Issue and Consignment Returns can be treated as actual sales to customers and the respective invoices can be generated.

3. Consignment Fillup and Pickup can be treated as just a goods movement and can’t be treated as any sales.

4. But when, Consignment Fillup and Pickup is done and the consignee is located in any EU country other than the Plant / Warehouse located country, then this goods movement is need to be reported as per the EU tax regulations.

5. So, Plants Abroad invoice is generated so that these movements can be captured in INTRASTAT and these invoices are ZERO invoices as there is no sale and this is only goods movement.


Effects of Plants Abroad Implementation:


1. Once the Plants Abroad functionality is activated in SAP system, then a new field “Country Currency” and “Exchange Rate” will be shown in Set Country Global Parameters configuration.


2. This “Country Currency” is maintained with respective country currency for all those countries which have company code and the respective “Exchange Rate Type” is also maintained, otherwise, accounting documents will not be generated.

3. While creating new tax codes or maintaining existing tax codes, a new field “Reporting Country” will be shown.


4. This field must be maintained with the respective reporting country, so that, these tax codes will be reported in the respective country Tax Reports. Otherwise, the country wise tax reports can’t be generated.

5. While doing MIRO (Invoice Verification), the default country of company code will be shown in the document, so, this must need to be changed with change Reporting Countryoption, so that, this value can be posted with the respective warehouse country.


6. Due to Plants Abroad activation, while generating advance tax reports (RFUMSV00), there will be new field “Tax Return Country” and a new check box “Country Currency instead of Local Currency” will be available in Further Selections.


7. Here we have to give, the country code for which the Tax Report is generated (say LU or IT or DE) and need to check the check box of “Country C instead of local C” (if the company code country currency and Plant / warehouse country currency are not same) so that the report can be generated in Local Currency and not with the currency of Company code country.

8. And while executing INTRASTAT Arrivals and INTRASTAT Dispatch reports, need to give the fields “Country of Declaration” and “Dec Currency” so that the report can be generated based on this declaration country and currency, because the same company code is maintained in different countries with different VAT numbers for different Plants / Warehouses.




Conclusion :

Plants Abroad Functionality ensures to run the business as per the European Tax regulations and provide correct Tax Reports and INTRASTAT reports, when companies have their plants / warehouses in other European Countries and stock movements are done from those countries.

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  • Hi Praveen

    Great article! I have a question about the consignment part of plants abroad. Do you need to create a dummy plant in the destination country in order for plants abroad to work with a consignment fill-up process? In reality the company does not have a plant in the destination country, but I am wondering how the plants abroad scenario will work for consignments.

    Please let me know.


  • Hello there Praveen - first at all thanks for the great explanation. I have a question about it - And my question is: WHY DO WE NEED TO USE "MIRO"?

    I did customized the “Plants abroad” and, what happens to me when I test is…(following your point above - a) - intra company stock transfer):

    After the (i) UB, we GI the (ii) NL (we get a material document) and thereafter we could issue the (iv) WIA Invoice (acc posting with WIA1, 2 and 3). After the GI is done we could also (iii) GR (material document).

    The GI and the GR update material master data in terms of quantity and value per plant – depending on the “material type” configuration.

    As I try to execute MIRO I get the message - No (suitable) ítem found for purchase order “xxxxxxxx” -.

    I think I get everything and I don’t need to post in MIRO, am I right? I mean, I get the movements and the quantity/value differences and I issue a Zero valued Invoice with the proper taxes on it… why should I use further MIRO?