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Document 62015CN0022

Case C-22/15: Action brought on 19 January 2015 — European Commission v Kingdom of the Netherlands

OJ C 228, 13.7.2015, p. 2–3 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, HR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)

13.7.2015   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

C 228/2


Action brought on 19 January 2015 — European Commission v Kingdom of the Netherlands

(Case C-22/15)

(2015/C 228/02)

Language of the case: Dutch

Parties

Applicant: European Commission (represented by: L. Lozano Palacios and G. Wils acting as Agents)

Defendant: Kingdom of the Netherlands

Form of order sought

The Commission claims that the Court should:

find that by granting the value-added-tax exemption for the hiring of quays and moorings to the members of water sports associations not employing one or more persons for the provision of their services, in respect of sailing or leisure activities which cannot be equated with the practice of sport or physical education, the Kingdom of the Netherlands has failed to fulfil its obligations under Articles 2(1), 24(1) and 133 of Council Directive 2006/112/EC of 28 November 2006 on the common system of value added tax (‘the VAT Directive’) (1), in conjunction with Article 132(1)(m) thereof;

find that in limiting the VAT exemption for hiring to water sports associations not employing one or more persons, when the quays and moorings are hired to members taking part in a sport and the hiring is closely linked to and essential for the practice of that sport, the Kingdom of the Netherlands has failed to fulfil its obligations under Articles 2(1), 24(1) and 133 of Directive 2006/112/EC in conjunction with Article 132(1)(m) thereof;

order the Kingdom of the Netherlands to pay the costs.

Pleas in law and main arguments

1.

Directive 2006/112/EC requires the Member States to exempt the supply of certain services closely linked to sport or physical education by non-profit-making organisations to persons taking part in sport or physical education.

2.

Article 11(1)(e) of the 1968 Netherlands Law on Turnover Tax exempts from VAT the provision of services by sports associations to their members, with the exception of the services provided by water sports associations which, in order to provide their services, have recourse to one or more persons employed by them, in so far as those services consist in the carrying out, with the help of those persons, of activities in relation to vessels or in the provision of quays and moorings.

3.

The Commission contends that the Netherlands exemption is both too broad and too narrow.

4.

First of all, the Commission takes issue with the fact that the VAT exemption is not limited to the hiring of quays and moorings to members of non-profit-making organisations taking part in sport, but also extends to the hiring of quays and moorings to the members of associations which, whether on a purely recreational or perhaps even residential basis, use the vessel located in the hired quay or mooring, without leaving the location. The exemption is to that extent contrary to Articles 2(1), 24(1) and 133 of the VAT Directive.

5.

In addition, the Commission takes issue with the fact that, in order to benefit from the exemption, the associations in question must not have any employees. The Netherlands thereby adds a condition that goes beyond what is permitted by Article 133 of the VAT Directive (in conjunction with Article 132(1)(m) thereof).


(1)  OJ 2006 L 347, p. 1.


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