The deduction of VAT on catering costs incurred during an event with (existing or potential) clients has been the subject of extensive case law and of many an issue with the Belgian VAT Administration at the time of a VAT audit.
Up to now, the Belgian VAT Administration acknowledged the VAT deduction on event costs provided that it could be demonstrated that the event had been organised for marketing purposes. However, the Belgian VAT Administration rejected the VAT deduction on the catering costs linked to the event.
Today, an Administrative Decision was published where the Belgian VAT Administration acknowledges a decision given by the Belgian Supreme Court in 2010. Based on this case law, the Administration accepts the VAT deduction for catering costs incurred in the framework of an event.
It remains essential, however, to demonstrate the marketing/promotional character (e.g. promotion of a specific product or service) of such an event in order to be able to deduct VAT.
In our opinion, it is possible to recover the input VAT with respect to catering costs incurred as from 1 January 2012. So it may be a good idea to check whether the VAT concerned here was previously deducted or not.
For more details and information on how PwC can support you, please contact your regular PwC adviser.
Source: E.T. 124.247 dd. 13.03.2015