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Taxation and Customs Union

Fiscalis programme

Fiscalis is an EU cooperation programme that enables participating countries, their tax administrations, and their officials to work together in the fight against tax fraud, tax evasion and aggressive tax planning.

The Fiscalis programme also helps to protect the financial interests of Member States and taxpayers. It allows the relevant authorities to implement EU law in the field of taxation by ensuring exchange of information, supporting administrative cooperation and helping to reduce the administrative burden of tax authorities and compliance costs for taxpayers when needed.

For the period 2021-2027, the programme has a budget of €269 million (current prices).

The European Commission is responsible for the implementation of the programme. It is assisted by the Fiscalis programme committee composed of delegates from each EU Member State.

All actions under the programme have to be in line with the objectives and priorities outlined in the programme regulation and the resulting multi-annual Work Programme.

Multiannual Work Programme 2021-2023 for the Fiscalis programme
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(407.89 KB - PDF)
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What are the goals of the programme?

  • Support tax authorities and taxation to enhance the functioning of the internal market.
  • Foster the competitiveness of the Union and fair competition in the Union.
  • Protect the financial and economic interests of the Union and its Member States, including protecting those interests from tax fraud, tax evasion and tax avoidance, and of improving tax collection.
  • Support the development of tax policy actions and the implementation of Union law relating to taxation
  • Foster cooperation between tax authorities, including exchange of tax information and capacity building development, such as human competency and European electronic systems.

Who can participate?

The programme is for European Union countries but is also open to candidate and potential candidate countries.

  1. acceding countries, candidate countries and potential candidates, in accordance with the general principles and general terms and conditions for the participation of those countries in Union programmes established in the respective framework agreements and Association Council decisions, or similar agreements and in accordance with the specific conditions laid down in agreements between the Union and those countries;
  2. European Neighbourhood Policy countries, in accordance with the general principles and general terms and conditions for the participation of those countries in Union programmes established in the respective framework agreements and Association Council decisions, or in similar agreements and in accordance with the specific conditions laid down in agreements between the Union and those countries, provided that those countries have reached a sufficient level of approximation of the relevant legislation and administrative methods to those of the Union;
  3. other third countries, in accordance with the conditions laid down in a specific agreement covering the participation of the third country in any Union programme;

The following countries expressed interest to join the Fiscalis programme:

Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Kosovo*, Moldova, Montenegro, the Republic of North Macedonia, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine**.

*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.

**The accession process is ongoing since October 2021. The Section will be updated regularly and based on the evolution of the accession of the individual countries.

Eligible activities under this programme include:

  1. the development and operation of the common components of the European electronic systems for taxation (EES)***;  
  2. collaborative activities between the administrations and their experts, and between the administrations and the Commission, as well as with other partners – seminars, workshops, project groups, networks, expert teams, study/working visits, etc.; 
  3. EU-level human competency building and training activities – eLearning modules, eBooks, nano-learning courses, educational videos, etc.;  
  4. studies and communication activities;   
  5. innovation activities – proof-of-concepts, pilots, prototyping initiatives and similar activities.

***European electronic systems’ means electronic systems necessary for taxation and for the execution of the mission of tax authorities.

For further information on the funding opportunities please consult the Funding & Tenders Portal

What is the added value of the programme?

Under the Fiscalis programme, the Commission develops and maintains interoperable and cost-effective IT solutions to support tax authorities in their efforts to fight tax evasion and tax avoidance. The programme facilitates cooperation, the sharing of good practices, IT and human capacity-building to boost administrative efficiency and IT collaboration, joint risk management and audit. This leads to improvements in the EU's competitiveness, boosting innovation and facilitating new economic models.

This work includes the creation of standardised forms for the exchange of information on request and spontaneous exchanges, an EU system which can check the validity of national Tax Identification Numbers, helping to identify taxpayers that are engaged in cross-border activity so that tax administrations and businesses can collect and exchange data automatically. Among the IT systems currently funded by Fiscalis is the Commission's VAT Information Exchange System (VIES) where businesses and individuals can check if a business is registered for VAT purposes to trade cross-border within the EU.

Fiscalis supports Member States in their tax audit activities, by providing financial and organisational support for international audits and controls and the presence of tax officials in other Member States' tax administration premises.

The programme funds expert teams of taxation experts from different Member States who work together on operational issues, which go beyond the traditional means of cooperation to realise the pre-identified objectives of a common long-term project allowing EU countries to pool expertise in specific domains.

The programme also finances the development of eLearning courses on topics of common interest for tax administrations.

Learn more about the achievements of the 2014-2020 Fiscalis programme.

Legal texts and other relevant documents/ information

Fiscalis Programme Annual Progress Report 2021

Regulation (EU) 2021/847 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 May 2021establishing the Fiscalis programme for cooperation in the field of taxation and repealing Regulation (EU) No 1286/2013

Expert teams funded by the Fiscalis 2020 programme

Fiscalis programme on taxation - ex-ante evaluation SWD(2018) 323

Fiscalis programme on taxation - ex-ante evaluation summary SWD(2018) 324

Fiscalis: Reference documents