The general conditions for toolmaking are changing constantly and at high speed. Despite all the efforts of vehicle manufacturers to keep unit numbers high by forming vehicle platforms, customer demands for different variants and individual equipment continue to rise. As a result, Automotive manufacturers and suppliers are facing major challenges as they need to find an efficient way to reduce lead times and costs while ensuring high tool and component quality.
In practice, complex agreements related to the treatment of tooling costs often arise between the OEM and the supplier. They can later be subject to renegotiation of unit prices, especially if planned unit quantities are exceeded. Through tooling cost grants, OEMs regularly contribute to their suppliers' tooling costs, but include these grants into their calculation of part prices.
When accounting for tooling costs and tooling cost grants, it must be assessed whether the tool is an in-house or customer tool. It must be clarified which party is the economic owner of the tool. In this context, legal ownership may differ from economic ownership.
Particularities may occur in the VAT treatment of the tools, since the tools are usually acquired by the OEM, but physically remain with the supplier (delivery without movement of goods). Here, too, the decisive factor is whether the tool is an in-house or customer tool. In addition, there may be questions regarding the treatment of prototype tools, consequences from relocations of tools or customs aspects.