Hungary has filed a petition with the European Commission asking for duty and VAT relief on foreign face masks, ventilators and other health protective equipment in response to the emergency caused by the coronary epidemic – informed Norbert Izer on Thursday.
The exemption would not automatically apply to all health protective equipment, as it would
only products distributed free of charge may be free of charges
added the State Secretary for Tax Affairs.
The Hungarian government declared the emergency on March 11, 2020. Since then, he has taken a number of preventive measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and to mitigate the economic effects of the pandemic, the Secretary of State recalled, adding that the application had already been completed. The Hungarian government is doing its utmost to ensure that health care products are imported as widely as possible and free of public charges, said Norbert Izer.
If you do not come from the European Union, you will also have to pay duty for the face masks. The duty rate is 6.3 percent or 12 percent, depending on the material used. In addition to customs, the sales tax is also levied on the masks, the Secretary of State explained. The Hungarian Government therefore, together with several countries, approached the European Commission and requested that:
exempt from public burden the charitable importation of mouth masks and other medical equipment needed to combat the epidemic. The Commission can take a decision already this week
Although increased production of health and protective equipment in the European Union has been encouraged, current levels of production and existing stocks are unlikely to be sufficient to meet growing demand in Europe, the Secretary of State said in a statement about the action taken today.
If the Commission accepts the Hungarian Government's request, imports of non-EU face masks and other health protective equipment would be duty-free and VAT-free. The exemption would not automatically apply to all health protective equipment, as only emergency responders, charity and free-of-charge equipment imported by government organizations, could be exempt from public burdens, stressed Norbert Izer.
The Secretary of State said it would help to combat COVID-19, in addition to providing significant tax relief for duty and VAT.