The Spanish government has taken the decision to extend the super-reduced VAT on surgical masks until June 2022.
Surgical masks will continue to have a super-reduced value-added tax of 4% over the first half of 2022, as announced this Thursday in the Senate by the Minister of Finance, María Jesús Montero. This means that the low tax on masks, an item that continues to be of mandatory use for protection against COVID, will be extended beyond December 31, the date that had previously been set for it to come to an end.
The new norm will once again be temporary, maintaining the super-reduced VAT for six more months. According to Montero, it will give “continuity to this measure over the next six months, during which the mask will continue to be mandatory”. Masks are currently still required in indoor spaces, and outdoors if it is not possible to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres. It is currently uncertain when they will stop being mandatory, but the government is sending a clear message regarding their continued use.
The super-reduced VAT on surgical masks was lowered to 4% in November 2020, but for other types of masks, it remained at 21%.
The issue had been on the table for several weeks, and the green light was finally given a few days ago, when the Economic and Financial Affairs Council, ECOFIN, agreed to give more freedom to member states to set reduced VAT on certain essential goods, including material for public health purposes, such as masks, products that are useful for environmental protection, and those which facilitate the digital transition.
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