After four highly successful years Brian Johnson, the man behind the Isle of Man Aircraft Registry and the island’s first Director of Civil Aviation, leaves on August 26 to pursue a new challenge (the Swaziland registry, according to some reports).
Imports of business aircraft into the UK have ground to a halt since tax authorities there scrapped its zero-VAT rating in January, according to Gama Aviation CEO Marwan Khalek. The change was forced on the UK by the European Commission with the intent of harmonizing VAT rules for aircraft sales, but the outcome has been a confusing muddle in which no one seems sure how VAT should now be applied.
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Universal Weather & Aviation (Stand C235) has doubled the number of countries covered by its UVAir service to provide fuel invoicing that is compliant with requirements for value added tax (VAT) due on aircraft fuel in Europe.
Operators of Bombardier jets are dismayed because they now have to pay state sales taxes on parts purchased through Bombardier’s Smart Parts program. Several operators who spoke to AIN on condition of anonymity said one of the primary reasons they participate in Smart Parts is to control and budget annual operating costs. “This adds a new dimension to overhead we didn’t budget for 2010,” one said.
Universal Weather & Aviation (Booth No. 7030) is launching a new service to guarantee that fuel purchases in Europe are made at the correct rate of value added tax (VAT). The complimentary service, which started on May 1, should overcome the headaches commonly associated with calculating which VAT rate should apply based on an aircraft operator’s status.
Although some operators expressed concern because Bombardier has begun charging sales tax for parts covered under its Smart Parts program, this is a fairly normal requirement, according to tax expert Nel Stubbs, vice president of Conklin & de Decker. “If an aircraft is based in a state that has a sales/use tax,” she explained, “and the part is brought into that state and installed on an aircraft, that state’s tax rules apply.
A recent announcement by Bombardier Aerospace is causing a stir among Smart Parts customers. The company is going to begin charging state sales tax on all parts ordered through the hourly program; the tax is not included in the hourly program cost. The change will apply only to sales in those states that require vendors to charge tax. The exact number of states involved was not readily available but is believed to be fewer than 10.
Avinode and CharterX are joining forces to form what will be the executive charter market’s largest online portal. Avinode is buying out the CharterX shares for an undisclosed sum. The deal should be closed by early this month, at which point the two companies’ technical teams will start integrating the rival systems.
The UK government is considering a demand from the European Commission (EC) that it change its tax legislation to remove an exemption from value-added tax (VAT) for privately operated aircraft weighing more than 8,000 kilograms (17,636 pounds). On June 25, the EC “formally re-quested” through a so-called “reasoned opinion” that Britain bring its VAT rules in line with those of the 27-state European Union.