Increase in VAT on sales of works of art stimulates French market

Currently 5.5 %, the tax must increase to 20 % before 2025, in application of a European directive. An increase that risks degrading France’s place in the world art market, according to several of its players. Faced with concern, Bercy tries to reassure.

by Harry Bellet

A platform signed by many renowned artists published in MO12345lemonde, febrile exchanges between merchants and gallery owners on social networks, Gabriel Attal, Minister Delegate in charge of public accounts, making a duty to meet urgently, if not to reassure everything This beautiful world, Bercy ensuring that “nothing should endanger the art market in France or discourage the actors”, rarely press article will have aroused such an excitement.

titled “How France is preparing to scuttle its art market”, it is due to our sister Martine Robert, Echos. She writes there that our country, reassembled in twenty years from 3 % to 7 % of the world art market and now weighing half of the European market alone, was going to “shoot itself” by adopting – it must be before the 1 er January 2025 – a directive of the Council of the European Union (EU) dated April 2022 which carries the VAT, currently 5.5 % (a French exception ) 20 % on the sale of works of art, but also on their importation of countries outside the EU.

The current rate of 5.5 % made of France, less deeper in this area, the favorite gateway to import works in Europe. It is, just as much – if not more – than the multiplication of foundations or the remarkable increase in art lovers and collectors, one of the reasons why for a few years, and more precisely from Brexit, all the big foreign merchants have opened a branch in Paris.

old painting and until modern art

The Parisian gallery owner Kamel Mennour wonders: “I will now hesitate to take new artists, if the increase is such that I cannot sell them.” Currently, like his colleagues, he only contributes to VAT on VAT The margin he makes to resale, not on the entire price of the work. The same, which represents in France several big international names, of those who have a different gallery in each country, will have trouble explaining to its European customers why they can buy this or that artist in New York or London 20 % cheaper that in him.

Another problem arises for old painting and until modern art. Many masterpieces, and in particular French art, are currently owned by private foreign collections. A merchant or a house of sale, attempted so far to offer them on the Parisian market where the names of Nicolas de Staël or Soulages further move the hexagonal hearts than those of New Yorkers, will therefore hesitate to do so if The end buyer lies outside the EU. In any other area of ​​the economy, if the balance between exports and imports is favorable to the first, the country is enriched. In art, it is the opposite: heritage is becoming a point in.

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/Media reports cited above.