Circular 18/E provides further clarification on Italian e-invoicing

La circolare 18/E

“An electronic invoice is one that is sent and received in any electronic format”. This is the definition laid down by the Italian Tax Authority in Circular 18/E, issued on June 24. The document expands on the information provided in the previous Circular 12/E on electronic invoicing and its use, and also clears up certain key aspects related with acceptance by the receiver and the methods of sending.

One of the new features in terms of the concept of “electronic invoicing” is the distinction drawn between an electronic invoice and a paper bill. The circular establishes that the difference “is not, per se, the original format type – electronic or paper – used for its creation, but rather the circumstance that the invoice is in electronic format when it is transmitted (or made available), received and accepted by the recipient.” In other words, bills created through electronic means, but traditionally sent (on paper), are not considered electronic invoices. However, those generated on paper, then scanned and sent electronically, are defined as such.

Another notable aspect of Circular 18/E is that, as of now, it is no longer necessary to have a formal, signed written consent between the sender and receiver of electronic invoices. Although the use of this system is subject to acceptance by the recipient, their payment of the bills shall be deemed sufficient proof of an implicit agreement. In this sense, it is also important to note that there is no mandatory “symmetry” between sender and recipient. This means that the issuer may invoice electronically and the recipient may decide to maintain the traditional paper-based management system.

In addition to these novel aspects, the Tax Agency document reminds us in Article 1.2 of the three indispensable requirements that must endorse all electronic invoices: authenticity of origin, content integrity and readability. These three features must be fulfilled from the moment the invoice is issued until the end of the safekeeping period stipulated in current legislation.

There are different methods in place to ensure compliance with these requirements. Among them, the use of electronic signature, the use of EDI systems for electronic data transfer, or use of a management control system.

These are the methods applied by the EDICOM e-invoicing platform, designed to ease the daily tasks of administration departments as far as possible. These are B2B/B2G solutions which are not only aligned with the Italian regulations, but are also of an international nature, so will enable connection with any public or private partner anywhere in the world.


EDICOM to present e-catalogue and EDI at GS1 Guatemala event

Seminario sobre EDI en GS1 Guatemala

EDICOM is taking part in the GS1 Guatemala event mainly to broach the rollout of electronic cataloguing (data pools) and EDI in businesses. Visitors can gain first-hand knowledge of our EDI platform for the exchange of business and logistic transactions, e-billing solutions for Latin America, or our electronic cataloguing solution EDICOMData, which synchronizes the product master files of suppliers and distributors anywhere in the world.

EDICOM is the leading figure in rolling out electronic solutions that respond to the major business management and logistical challenges now facing companies. Technology and the use of standards make it possible to optimize management throughout the supply chain, thanks to EDI or e-catalogues such as EDICOMData, which provide updated and error-free product information. All this means not only better business management, but also significant economic savings.


The seminar will be held on August 13 from 08:0h to 12:00h, at the Intercontinental Hotel (14 Calle, 2-51 Zona 10) Salón Roble I (level 3).

GS1 Guatemala offers you this free invitation to the seminar, chaired by experts from EDICOM, GS1 Mexico, GS1 Guatemala and specialists from the country’s major retail chains who have promoted and developed the rollout of e-commerce projects for electronic document interchange (EDI).

For further information on the technological solutions we are showing at the event:


E-invoicing sees 19% growth in Europe

E-invoicing sees 19% growth in Europe

European businesses processed over 840 million electronic invoices in 2013. This figure amounts to 19% growth compared to 2012, when the total volume reached almost 706 million. These data are taken from the annual survey by the European e-Invoice Service Providers Association (EESPA) and confirm the increasingly widespread uptake of the system.

E-billing is especially well established in B2B and B2G areas. Last year, more than 603 million e-invoices between companies or between public authorities and their suppliers were processed. This represents a rise of 16,6% compared to 2012. In B2C, the volume of electronic invoices issued was lower (238 million), although the figure means a 26% increase if we compare it with the previous year.

The forecast for 2014 is that the rollout of electronic invoicing will continue to spread throughout Europe. According to the annual study “E-Invoicing / E-Billing: International Market Overview & Forecast” by Billentis, this year the European Union is likely to show 22% growth in the B2G sphere. The rate will be slightly lower in B2C, where it is roughly calculated at around 15 %.

Digital administration (e-Government) is one of the Union’s priorities, and an increasing number of initiatives are focused on this goal. In fact, several European Governments, such as Italy or Spain, have announced legal measures to require their use in business relations with the Administration. Electronic billing is no longer merely a technological issue, but also entails great economic savings for businesses and administrations thanks to the automation of transactions. In addition, it cuts payment times through more effective management, facilitates storage and contributes to protecting the environment by minimizing the use of paper.


EDICOM implements Global e-Invoicing

EDICOM provides services to foment electronic billing systems between companies all over the world, through a powerful international platform which processes 240 million documents annually worldwide.

Permanent presence through offices in Spain, France, Italy, USA, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia, and the scope of the e-invoicing projects rolled out in several other countries, such as Chile, Slovenia, United Kingdom, Germany, Czech Republic, Costa Rica, etc, positions the company as one of the great benchmarks in Electronic Invoicing in the international arena. In Europe, it moves 72 million documents a year, a very high percentage of the total processed, as revealed in the Billentis study. The figures are even higher in Latin America, where Edicom is a point of reference for large companies and a pioneer in introducing electronic billing in different countries, such as Mexico. Mexico is a front runner in uptake of the electronic schema (CFDI), where EDICOM processes over 14 million invoices for tax purposes on a monthly basis.


Mexico rolls out electronic accounting

México implanta la contabilidad electrónica

Mexican taxpayers must do their bookkeeping electronically and then forward the results to the Tax Administration Service (SAT). This is an initiative that was included in the Omnibus Tax Ruling (RMF) for 2014, although it was not yet fully developed until now. Nevertheless, in the Second raft of amendments to the RMF and Annex 24, the SAT details the regulated electronic schema for issuing e-documents or electronic accounting reports.

So, at the end of each month, individuals and corporations are required to send the SAT three files, traditionally submitted on paper, but which will be generated in electronic XML format as the new regulation comes into force:

  • Chart of accounts that have shown movement in the period.
  • Journals generated. A record of actual movements (purchases, sales, expenses, etc.). In traditional accounting, many taxpayers generate this document on a daily basis, although the electronic system uses monthly periods.
  • Trial balance, which includes opening balances, movements, final balances of each account, results, etc. In addition to monthly statements, taxpayers must also generate a year end annual balance sheet. This must be delivered to the SAT in April, in the case of legal persons, or in May, in the case of natural persons.

These three documents are part of the usual accounting procedure, but until now they were not sent to the SAT, but simply stored on paper for possible checking or third-party audits. With electronic accounting, these three reports must be generated in XML with the technical specifications laid down in Annex 24 of the second raft of amendments to the RMF.

Implementing an electronic accounting system allows users to automate the entire creation and safeguarding process for electronic documents, relieving company accounting and admin departments of an extraordinary workload, while fully complying with the new fiscal control measure issued by the SAT.

This is a procedure which companies can outsource to an EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) service provider such as EDICOM, whose platform implements the necessary developments to generate the XML files and integrate them with each company’s own accounting system.

Once the messages are generated, the taxpayers must upload them to the Tax Mailbox . This is a private portal accessed by username and password through the SAT website. This part of the process is performed manually, as there is currently no method that would allow automatic connection to the mailbox.


Immediate application

Electronic accounting comes into force this July for legal persons (companies). However, they may wait until October to submit their statements. In November, they should do so with their accounts for August and in December, with the books for September and October. Finally, in January 2015, the information on the last two months of 2014 will be delivered to SAT, so that taxpayers can see in the new fiscal year up to date with their tax obligations. 2015


Semplificazione Decree issued

On 26 July, the Gazzeta Ufficiale announced a Decree by the Ministry of Economy and Finance introducing simplifications related with electronic digitization of documents. From now on, issuers of electronic invoicing will have more facilities in Italy, especially in the safekeeping process. These measures follow the guidelines set forth in the European Digital Agenda and other initiatives undertaken by some member states to encourage the so-called “paperless office” in B2G and B2B areas.


What are the main new features of this Decree?

  • The requirement to preserve invoices on a fortnightly basis disappears. This term falls into line with that of books and records, which may be stored in the three months following the deadline for filing tax returns.
  • Also eliminated is sending of the so-called impronta dell’archivio, an XML file with information on documents stored electronically. Until now, this file had to be sent to the Tax Authority using tools such as ENTRATEL and FISCONLINE.
  • As set forth in Article 6, it will no longer be necessary to pay the “imposta di bollo” (stamp duty) in advance. The tax on items such as invoices, deeds, documents and records issued throughout the year will be charged in a single payment. The deadline for these payments shall be 120 days after year-end.


More facilities for e-billing issuers

In addition to these measures implemented by the Italian Government, EDICOM has developed a technology infrastructure that optimizes the process of creating, sending and storing electronic invoices. This gives a further boost to the advantages of paperless business and tax management.