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Research projects

The right to deduct input VAT in Austria, Germany and Sweden

About this project

Project information

Project status



Eleonor Kristoffersson

Research subject

The purpose of this project is to analyse the right of deduction of input value-added tax (VAT) in Austria, Germany and Sweden. The purpose includes developing a methodical framework for how to carry out comparative studies in an EU harmonized field of law, such as VAT law.

The following research questions will be addressed and answered:
•    Which methodical framework is most suitable for carrying out comparative studies within the field of EU VAT Law?
•    What can be learned from the EU VAT Directive  and the case law of the CJEU on deductions on input VAT?
•    Which differences can be identified between the domestic VAT acts in Austria, Germany and Sweden compared to each other and compared to the EU VAT Directive?
•    How can the differences be explained, e.g. allowed exceptions from the VAT Directive or different interpretation of the EU VAT Directive?
•    How do differences in the right to deduct input VAT in different jurisdictions influence the EU VAT system, such as it is intended to work?
•    Which of the identified differences should be kept, and which of them should be abolished?

The two last research questions require benchmarks in order to be answered. There is a broad common understanding both in the EU, and the OECD, on which components a VAT system should comprise in order to be a “good” VAT system. In its most recent guideline, the OECD identifies the following characteristics for a well-functioning VAT system.

Research teams

Research funding bodies

  • Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation
  • Swedish Research Council


  • Christoph Urtz, Universität Salzburg
  • Johannes Michael Rainer, Universität Salzburg
  • Phillip Loser, Universität Salzburg