Official Journal of the European Union
Judgment of the Court (Sixth Chamber) of 3 February 2022 (request for a preliminary ruling from the Bundesfinanzhof — Germany) — B AG v Finanzamt A
(Case C-515/20) (1)
(Reference for a preliminary ruling - Value added tax (VAT) - Directive 2006/112/EC - Article 122 - Reduced rate for supplies of wood for use as firewood - Differentiation on the basis of the objective characteristics and properties of the goods - Types of wood intended for use as fuel which serve the same consumer need and are in competition with each other - Principle of fiscal neutrality)
Language of the case: German
Parties to the main proceedings
Applicant: B AG
Defendant: Finanzamt A
Operative part of the judgment
Article 122 of Council Directive 2006/112/EC of 28 November 2006 on the common system of value added tax must be interpreted as meaning that the concept of wood for use as firewood, within the meaning of that article, designates any wood which, on the basis of its objective properties, is intended exclusively for burning.
Article 122 of Directive 2006/112 must be interpreted as meaning that a Member State which, in applying that article, establishes a reduced rate of value added tax for supplies of wood for use as firewood, may limit its scope as regards some categories of supplies of wood for use as firewood with reference to the Combined Nomenclature, subject to compliance with the principle of fiscal neutrality.
The principle of fiscal neutrality must be interpreted as not precluding national law from excluding from the benefit of the reduced rate of value added tax the supply of wood chips, even though it grants that benefit to supplies of other types of wood for use as firewood, subject to wood chips not being interchangeable, from the point of view of the average consumer, with other types of wood for use as firewood, which it is for the referring court to ascertain.
(1) OJ C 28, 25.1.2021.