With e-invoicing offering benefits like faster invoice processing, improved accuracy, enhanced security, and cost savings, Belgium joined the list of countries mandating the use of electronic invoices in transactions.
Belgium’s journey into mandatory electronic invoicing has been progressive. The country started with a regional adoption, making e-invoicing mandatory in B2G transactions in the Flanders and Brussels regions, before moving to a nationwide application. Now, Belgium has announced plans for mandatory e-invoicing for B2B transactions from January 1, 2026.
When you do business with other companies, you’ll be required to send e-invoices. Hence, you need to be familiar with the B2B e-invoicing regulations.
What are the requirements for B2B e-invoicing in Belgium? This article will answer this question. At the end of this article, you’ll know how to send complaint e-invoices to other private companies when the B2B e-invoicing mandate comes into force.
Is B2B e-invoicing mandatory in Belgium?
In Belgium, B2B e-invoicing is currently optional. However, the Belgian Council of Ministers has approved a countrywide e-invoicing obligation from January 1, 2026, meaning B2B e-invoicing will be compulsory from January 1, 2026.
Not long ago, B2G (Business to Government) e-invoicing was compulsory only in the Flanders and Brussels regions of Belgium.
To reap the benefits of e-invoicing nationally, the Belgian government announced plans to move from the regional application of B2G e-invoicing to a nationwide application and to mandate B2B e-invoicing in the country.
With the move to a nationwide application of B2G electronic invoicing almost complete, Belgium has now announced a decree to make B2B e-invoicing compulsory by 2026.
Thus, until January 1, 2026, B2B e-invoicing in Belgium remains voluntary. This means contracting entities need to agree among themselves before electronic invoices are used.
But from January 1, 2026, B2B e-invoicing will become compulsory, and businesses in Belgium will need to generate, send, and receive structured electronic invoices even when dealing with other private entities.
What are the requirements for B2B e-invoicing in Belgium?
At the moment, the buyer must consent before you can send e-invoices in private contracts in Belgium. But this will change in January 2026, when the B2B e-invoicing mandate comes into full force.
By then, every business in Belgium will be obligated to be able to receive and issue e-invoices.
Mandatory B2B e-invoicing infrastructure and format
Also, contracting B2B parties are required to agree on the method and format for e-invoicing at the moment. However, the mandatory B2B e-invoicing is expected to use the PEPPOL interoperability model and the PEPPOL BIS format.
An electronic signature is not compulsory when sending e-invoices to public bodies in Belgium, and there’s no news about needing one for B2B e-invoices. However, you may choose to use a digital signature to add an extra layer of authenticity to your structured electronic documents.
Belgium requires businesses to keep e-invoices and related documents for several years - seven years for movable property and 15 years for immovable property.
It’s expected that the compulsory B2B e-invoicing will follow these archiving requirements.
B2B e-invoice content
B2B e-invoices must contain the same mandatory information as paper invoices. These include details of the buyer, a unique invoice number, date of issue, description of goods supplied or services rendered, quantities, unit prices, applicable VAT rates, and the total amount payable.
What are the key differences from the previous e-invoicing pre-draft bill?
The new draft Royal Decree made changes to the e-invoicing of public contracts.
The main difference between the Decree and the previous e-invoicing bill is the deadline for when economic operators are required to start sending their invoices electronically for public contracts with an estimated value of less than EUR30,000.
The previous bill outlined a phased approach for adopting B2G e-invoicing in the country. Implementation started with large public contracts and progressed to small contracts as follows:
- Large contracts (over EUR 215,000) - November 2022.
- Medium contracts (between EUR 215,000 and EUR 30,000) - May 2023.
- Small contracts (less than EUR 30,000 but not less than EUR 3,000) - November 2023.
The Belgian federal government allowed 18 months for the obligation of e-invoicing to come into force for small public contracts. This period would’ve ended on October 2023, so e-invoicing will be compulsory for these contracts by November 2023.
The new Royal Decree extends this “grace period” from 18 months to 22 months for small public contracts, meaning the obligation for businesses to send their invoices electronically for public contracts less than EUR 30,000 will come into force in March 2024.
Federal contracting authorities will also impose electronic invoicing for contracts less than EUR 3,000 from March 1, 2024.
Timeline for the implementation of the mandatory B2B e-invoicing in Belgium
The implementation of B2B e-invoicing was originally planned to follow a phased approach from January 2024 through July 2025. However, due to the current legislative impasse in the country around comprehensive tax reforms, the B2B implementation timetable has been pushed forward.
The updated date for the implementation of mandatory B2B e-invoicing in Belgium is set for January 2026, without a phased adoption approach. This means that all taxpayers (no matter their size) are required to be able to issue and receive electronic invoices by that date.
The original phased approach for B2B implementation was based on the size of the size of the taxpayer as follows:
- January 2024: All taxpayers will be required to be able to receive electronic invoices.
- July 2024: Large taxpayers (turnover of over EUR 9 million) will be required to send electronic invoices
- January 2025: Mid-size taxpayers (turnover between EUR 7 million and EUR 9 million) will be required to send invoices electronically
- July 2025: All taxpayers will be required to send invoices electronically.
B2B e-invoicing process in Belgium
An overview of the compulsory B2B e-invoicing process includes using an interoperability model and the PEPPOL infrastructure. Let’s discuss them in detail.
Belgium's B2B electronic invoice exchange model
Belgium’s B2B implementation will use the interoperability model. This means that while taxpayers will exchange invoices electronically, even in private contracts, there will be no real-time communication with the tax administration (DRR).
However, with time, the country should upgrade to the Decentralized CTC and Exchange model (DCTCE), meaning that as contracting bodies exchange invoices electronically, the central platform will collect invoice data according to ViDA specifications.
The technical structure of the mandatory B2B e-invoicing in Belgium
The Belgian tax authorities will use the PEPPOL (Pan European Public Procurement Online) network for B2B e-invoicing, which is the network widely used for B2G e-invoicing.
The contracting parties can also agree on other frameworks which are compliant with the European standards.
Belgium allows businesses to receive e-invoices via the platform Hermes, which converts PEPPOL BIS documents into human-readable formats and delivers them through email.
It receives PEPPOL BIS invoices over the P network, converts them into human-readable form (like XML-PDF), and delivers them to businesses through email.
However, the Hermes platform is a very basic system and is expected to be discontinued in a few years. Thus, it is best to look for a reliable service provider like Storecove to help you issue electronic invoices through the PEPPOL network.
PEPPOL uses the four-corner model, just like a telecommunications system. When you send your e-invoice, it moves from your station to your access point provider, from where it moves to your receiver’s access point provider before going to your receiver.
Thus, to send structured invoices via PEPPOL, all you need is a reliable PEPPOL access point provider. Your PEPPOL access point does more than forward your e-invoice. It converts your e-invoice to the right formats before sending it, ensuring that you are compliant with relevant e-invoicing specifications.
Understanding e-reporting in Belgium
Belgium will use a Continuous Transactions Control (CTC) for electronic invoicing and reporting invoice data. That will enable the country to get as close as possible to real-time reporting and maximize transparency in the system.
The electronic VAT reporting system will help Belgium align with the European Union’s VAT in Digital Age (ViDA) project, which aims to foster interoperability and facilitate information exchange between member countries.
The reporting system will replace the existing annual sales listing (ASL) and expand its scope.
Who is required to use the B2B electronic invoicing in Belgium?
B2B electronic invoicing in Belgium is expected to apply to all taxpayers who do business in the country, from small businesses to large enterprises.
Know that one of the main reasons compulsory electronic invoicing between Belgian companies is being introduced as a major Belgian tax reform is to reduce the VAT gap - the difference between what the government should receive in VAT revenue and what it actually receives.
For this reason, mandatory e-invoicing in business transactions will apply to all taxpayers.
Takeaway: Get ready for B2B e-invoicing in Belgium with Storecove
Belgium has approved a decree to make electronic invoicing compulsory for all B2B transactions from January 2016. The government has chosen the PEPPOL network for B2B e-invoicing.
Now is the time to prepare to be compliant by finding an access point provider that will help you access the PEPPOL network and issue compliant e-invoices.
Storecove is one of the 40+ Access Point Providers approved by the Belgian PEPPOL Authority. We will automatically convert your e-invoice to the relevant format and safely transmit it to your target. With Storecove, you’ll automatically be compliant with the latest e-invoicing regulations and save time and money on B2B e-invoicing by automating the processing.
Schedule a demo with an e-invoicing expert today and see how our e-invoicing solution can help you.
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