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e-Bilanz, a challenge for all companies in Germany

Written by Sabine Christiansen on . Posted in Exact Globe

Working in an international environment, we have to deal with the fiscal authorities in different countries. Especially in central European countries there are ambitions to streamline activities by enforcing more and more e-government processes. As this is a quite new process, there are still a lot of changes required from the government.

As a result our customers are pushed to do most tax related reporting in an electronic way, partially in the cloud. Germany is a good example for this, where all VAT reports and the newly introduced e-Bilanz XBRL reporting need to be uploaded directly to the servers of Ministry of Finance – and of course all data needs to be secured.

In the context of the act to reduce tax bureaucracy (SteuBAG), German government claimed that all companies in Germany are obliged to hand over their annual financial statements in an electronic way. XBRL was chosen as a method since this is already an existing solution for disclosure of trade balances. Based on existing trade taxonomy (version 4), a new fiscal taxonomy has been created to issue reports in form of instance documents. These reports need to be uploaded to the Elster server.

As we support import of this new fiscal taxonomy with Exact Globe Next product update 404, now we are starting detailed preparation on step 2, which means automatic upload of instance documents to the Elster-Server of fiscal government. This second part is planned for product update 405. Splitting solution into two parts should offer possibility to our customers to already set up maintenance, do all preparations and be ready in time for sending the report documents.

For companies in Germany this newly introduced e-Bilanz is quite a challenge, as all used GL account charts need to be checked and adjusted, before the fiscal taxonomy elements can be linked to them. As there is no default account template given in Germany, those links for all demanded reports need to be done manually one by one. And this of course can only be done in close relationship with the company’s tax consultant. As a result a lot of preparation is needed, which is a big effort for the all companies in Germany. Generating the reports (instance documents) and their upload to fiscal server is relatively simple and will become common practice soon.

Luckily product update 404 already offers possibility to do the biggest part of this job, so they are well prepared before their first reports need to be created and uploaded. If you want to know more about this topic, please check release notes for product update 404, which will be available soon.

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