Art. 21 Supplies exempt from the tax without credit
1A supply that is exempt from the tax without credit and for which taxation under Article 22 is not opted for is not taxable.
2Exempt from the tax without credit are:
- the transport of goods that is included in the reserved services under Article 3 of the Postal Services Act of 30 April 19971;
- hospital treatment and medical treatment in human medicine hospitals, including closely related supplies made by hospitals and medical treatment and diagnostic centres. The dispensing of self-manufactured or bought-in artificial limbs and orthopaedic equipment is deemed to be a taxable supply of goods;
- human medical treatment provided by doctors, dentists, psychotherapists, chiropractors, physiotherapists, naturopaths, midwives, nursing professionals or members of similar medical and nursing professions, provided the suppliers possess a licence to practise their profession: the Federal Council regulates the details. The dispensing of self-manufactured or bought-in artificial limbs and orthopaedic equipment is deemed to be a taxable supply of goods;
- the nursing care services supplied by nursing staff, nursing organisations and home aid (Spitex) or in homes, provided they are prescribed by a doctor;
- the supply of human organs by recognised medical institutions and hospitals and of human whole blood by persons possessing the necessary licence;
- the services of communities whose members are members of the professions listed in number 3, provided the services are supplied proportionately at cost price to the members for direct performance of their activities;
- the transport of sick or injured persons or persons with disabilities in vehicles specially adapted for the purpose;
- supplies provided by social assistance and social security institutions, supplies by charitable nursing and home aid (Spitex) organisations and by retirement, residential and nursing homes;
- supplies related to child and youth care provided by institutions specially fitted for the purpose;
- supplies closely related to cultural and educational development of young people provided by charitable youth exchange organisations; young people within the meaning of this provision are persons up to the age of 25;
- the following supplies in the field of education and training:3
- supplies in the field of the education of children and young people, of instruction, of training, of further education and of professional re-training, including instruction given by private teachers or at private schools,
- courses, lectures, and other events of a scientific or educational nature; lecturing activity is exempt from the tax without credit, irrespective of whether the fee is paid to the instructing person or his employer,
- examinations carried out in the area of education,
- organisational services (including related ancillary services) provided by members of an institution that makes supplies exempt from the tax without credit under letters a–c, for this institution,
- organisational services (including related ancillary services) for agencies of the Confederation, cantons and communes that make supplies exempt from the tax without credit under letters a–c with or without consideration;
- the provision of staff by religious or philosophical non-profit institutions for purposes of treating the sick, of social assistance and of social security, of child and youth care, of education and training and for religious and charitable purposes and for the common good;
- supplies that non-profit institutions with political, trade union, economic, religious, patriotic, philosophical, philanthropic, ecological, sporting, cultural or civic objects provide to their members against a contribution laid down in statutes or regulations;
- cultural services of the types listed below supplied directly to, or, if not supplied directly, immediately perceivable by the public:4
- theatrical, musical and choreographic performances and film shows,
- performances by actors, musicians, dancers and other performing artists, supplies from persons that make an artistic contribution to such performances, and supplies by fairground operators, including games of skill offered by the latter,
- visits to museums, galleries, monuments, historical sites and botanical and zoological gardens,
- services of libraries, archives and places for storing documents, in particular the permitting of inspection of text, sound and image carriers on their premises; however, the supply of goods (including lending for use) by such institutions is taxable;
- considerations demanded for sporting events, including considerations for participation in such events (e.g. starting money), together with the ancillary services included;
- cultural services and the supply of cultural works by their creators, such as authors, composers, film makers, painters, sculptors, and services supplied by publishers and collecting societies in order to circulate these works; the foregoing also applies to derivative works under Article 3 of the Copyright Act of 9 October 19927 that are of a cultural nature;
- supplies made at events such as bazaars, flea markets and raffles held by organisations that perform activities that are exempt from the tax without credit in the field of non-profit-making sports and cultural creativity, in the field of health care, social assistance and social security, and child and youth care, and by charitable nursing and home care (Spitex) organisations and by retirement, residential and nursing homes, provided the events serve the purpose of supporting these organisations financially and are held exclusively for their benefit; supplies provided by social assistance and social security organisations through second hand shops when the turnover thus generated is used exclusively for their benefit;
- in the insurance industry
- insurance and reinsurance supplies,
- social insurance supplies,
- the following supplies in relation to social insurance and prevention campaigns:
- supplies made by social insurance schemes to each other
- supplies made by executive bodies as part of their statutory duty to run prevention campaigns
- supplies related to basic and continuing professional education and training,
- supplies within the scope of the activity as insurance agents or insurance brokers;
- the following turnovers in the field of money and capital transactions:
- the granting and brokerage of credits and the management of credits by the lenders,
- the brokerage and assumption of liabilities, sureties and other securities and guarantees and the management of collateral by the lenders,
- turnovers, including those for brokerage, in deposits and current account transactions, in payment and transfer transactions, in business with money claims, cheques and other negotiable papers; however, the collection of debts on behalf of the creditor (debt collection business) is taxable,
- turnovers, including brokerage, relating to legal tender (domestic and foreign legal tender, such as currency, bank notes, coins); taxable, however, are collectors’ items (bank notes and coins) that are normally not used as legal tender,
- turnovers (spot and forward transactions), including brokerage, of securities, rights and derivatives and of interests in companies and other forms of association; however, the safe-keeping and the management of securities, rights and derivatives and of interests (especially security deposits) including fiduciary investments are taxable,
- the distribution of units in collective investment schemes under Article 3 paragraph 1 of the Collective Investment Schemes Act of 23 June 200611 (CISA), activities in accordance with Article 3 paragraph 2 CISA, and the management of collective investment schemes in accordance with CISA by persons, who manage or hold them in safekeeping, fund managements, depositary banks and their agents; agents are all individuals or legal entities, to whom the collective investments may delegate tasks under the CISA; the distribution of units in and the management of investment companies with fixed capital under Article 110 CISA are governed by letter e;
- the transfer and the creation of rights in rem in immovable property and the supplies of communities of condominium owners to the condominium owners, to the extent the supplies consist of the provision of the communal property for use, its maintenance, its repair and other management and the supply of heating and similar goods;
- the provision of immovable property and parts of immovable property for use or exploitation; taxable, however, are:
- the renting of residential and sleeping accommodation for guests and the renting of halls and rooms in hotels and restaurants,
- the renting of camping sites,
- the renting or leasing of non-public places for parking motor vehicles, unless it is a non-independent service ancillary to another property rental exempt from the tax without credit,
- the renting and leasing of immovable equipment and machines belonging to an operating facility, but not to a sports facility,
- the renting of safe deposit boxes,
- the renting of exhibition stands and individual rooms in exhibition and congress buildings;
- the supply of postal stamps valid on Swiss territory and other official stamps up to their printed value;
- turnovers from gambling, to the extent that the gross gaming income is subject to the casino tax under Article 119 of the Gambling Act of 29 September 201713 or the net profit achieved thereby is used in full for charitable purposes within the meaning of Article 125 of the said Act;
- the supply of used movable goods, which were used exclusively for the provision of supplies exempt by this article from the tax without credit;
- the sale of agricultural, forestry and market garden products cultivated in their own business by farmers, foresters or gardeners, the sale of cattle by cattle dealers, and the sale of milk by milk collection points to milk processing plants;
- publicity services, which charitable organisations provide for the benefit of third parties or third parties for the benefit of charitable organisations;
- between organisational units within the same public authority,
- between private or public law companies owned wholly by public authorities and the public authorities that own them or their organisational units,
- between institutions or foundations that were founded exclusively by public authorities and the public authorities that founded them or their organisational units;
- 28bis.16the provision of staff by public authorities to other public authorities;
- the exercise of arbitration functions;
- supplies between education and research institutions that are involved in education and research cooperation, provided those supplies are made as part of the cooperation, irrespective of whether the education and research cooperation is liable to value added tax.
3Whether a supply mentioned in paragraph 2 is exempt from the tax without credit is determined, subject to paragraph 4, exclusively by its nature and regardless of who makes or receives the supply.
4If a supply in paragraph 2 is exempt from the tax without credit based on the attributes either of the supplier or of the recipient of the supply, the exception applies only for supplies that are provided or received by a person with these attributes.
5The Federal Council shall specify in more detail the supplies exempt from the tax without credit; in doing so it shall observe the principle of competitive neutrality.
6Organisational units of a public authority under paragraph 2 number 28 are its agencies, its private and public companies, provided no other public authority or other third parties participate therein, and its institutions and foundations, provided the public authority founded them without the participation of other public authorities or other third parties.18
7The Federal Council shall determine which institutions are deemed to be education and research institutions under paragraph 2 number 30.19
1 [AS 1997 2452, 2000 2355 Annex No 23, 2003 4297, 2006 2197 Annex No 85, 2007 5645. AS 2012 4993 Annex No I]. See now: Art. 18 of the Postal Services Act of 17 Dec. 2010 (SR 783.0).
2 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
3 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
4 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
5 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
6 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
7 SR 231.1
8 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
9 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
10 Amended by Annex No 2 of the FA of 28 Sept. 2012, in force since 1 March 2013 (AS 2013 585; BBl 2012 3639).
11 SR 951.31
12 Amended by Annex No II 4 of the Gambling Act of 29 Sept. 2017, in force since 1 Jan. 2019 (AS 2018 5103; BBl 2015 8387).
13 SR 935.51
14 Repealed by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, with effect from 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
15 Amended by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615). The correction by the Federal Assembly Drafting Committee dated 31 Aug. 2017 relates only to the French text (AS 2017 4857).
16 Inserted by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
17 Inserted by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
18 Inserted by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
19 Inserted by No I of the FA of 30 Sept. 2016, in force since 1 Jan. 2018 (AS 2017 3575; BBl 2015 2615).
Art. 23 Supplies exempt from the tax
1If a supply is exempt from the tax under this article, domestic tax is not payable on the supply.
2Exempt from the tax are:
- the supply of goods, unless provided for use or exploitation, that are transported or dispatched directly abroad;
- the provision for use or exploitation, in particular the leasing or chartering of goods, provided the goods are predominantly used abroad by the recipient of the supply itself;
- the supply of goods that were demonstrably subject to customs control on Swiss territory in connection with a transit procedure (Art. 49 CustA3), a customs warehousing procedure (Art. 50–57 CustA), a temporary admission procedure (Art. 58 CustA), or inward processing procedure (Art. 59 CustA), provided the procedure was concluded in the proper manner or with subsequent approval from the Federal Customs Administration (FCA);
- the supply of goods which because of storage in a bonded warehouse (Art. 62–66 CustA) were demonstrably subject to customs control on Swiss territory and which have not retrospectively lost this customs status;
- the movement or arranging for the movement of goods abroad for reasons unrelated to a supply of goods;
- the transport or dispatch of goods in connection with the import of goods and all related supplies as far as the destination to which the goods are to be transported at the time the tax debt is incurred under Article 56; if no tax debt is incurred, the decisive time is governed by Article 69 CustA by analogy;
- the transport or dispatch of goods and all related supplies in connection with the export of goods released for free circulation under customs law;
- transport services and ancillary logistic activities, such as loading, unloading, trans-shipment, clearing or temporary warehousing:
- in which the place of supply of the service under Article 8 paragraph 1 is on Swiss territory, although the service itself is exclusively supplied abroad, or
- which are supplied in connection with goods subject to customs control;
- the supply of aircraft to airlines that carry on air transport and charter business commercially and whose turnovers from international flights exceed those from domestic traffic; the refurbishment, maintenance and servicing of aircraft which airlines have acquired as part of a supply of goods; the supply, maintenance and servicing of goods built into these aircraft or of goods for their operation; the supply of goods for the maintenance of these aircraft and services that are destined for the immediate needs of these aircraft and their loads;
- the services of intermediaries acting expressly in the name of and for account of others, provided the brokered supply is either exempt from the tax under this article or is effected exclusively abroad; if the brokered supply is effected both on Swiss territory and abroad, that part of the brokerage that relates to supplies abroad or supplies that are exempt from the tax under this article is exempt from the tax;
- the supply of services in their own name by travel agents and organisers of events, to the extent they make use of supplies of goods and services by third parties that are provided abroad; if these supplies by third parties are provided both on Swiss territory and abroad, only that part of the service of the travel agent or of the organiser that relates to supplies abroad is exempt from the tax;
- the supply of goods under Article 17 paragraph 1bis CustA to persons departing abroad or arriving from abroad by air.
3A direct export under paragraph 2 number 1 is constituted if the good supplied is exported abroad or to an open customs warehouse or bonded warehouse without being used on Swiss territory. In serial transactions, the direct export extends to all suppliers involved. The good supplied may, prior to export, be processed or finished by agents of the non-taxable customer.
4The Federal Council may, in order to safeguard competitive neutrality, exempt transport in cross-border air, rail or bus traffic from the tax.
5The Federal Department of Finance (FDF) shall regulate the conditions by which domestic supplies of goods are exempt from the tax if being exported in tourist traffic and shall specify the evidence required.