Belgian Peppol Authority




It is the end of the month. Like every other month since the e-Invoicing module was activated, Judith receives a report from her computer system that summarizes the invoices received and validated. It also contains a recap of the invoices produced and the status (received, approved/rejected, paid). Only by exception, when an incoming invoice does not match the data available in the system, or when a produced invoice is rejected by the customer, she gets a request for action detailing the mismatch and proposing action. The e-Invoicing module also cares for the production of outbound invoices: as soon as the delivery is done and other possible conditions are met, the system automatically issues the invoices to the customers.

This improvement saves her lots of time, previously wasted on bureaucracy. She can concentrate on her core business, which is a big relief. In the past, she was used to spending many evenings reconciling orders, invoices, contracts, delivery notes and so on, debugging frequent errors and consolidating tons of papers (or e-papers). Now she hardly ever touches an invoice anymore - only when there is a possible error. This scenario became fairly exceptional, since e-invoicing was generalized.  All business partners use similar tools. The globalization of these tools and practices had a dramatic impact. For decades, enterprises attempted to do the same in isolation, which achieved only insignificant improvements, except for a small minority of very large actors. Now that the technology is generalized, these actors also benefit from it, through lower prices offered by the technology providers and better quality of incoming documents. This is really a win-win for everybody!

Belgium adheres to the European vision of the Digital Agenda 2020, which identifies the generalization of e-invoicing as a major source of efficiency. The story above reflects the potential of the adoption of e-Invoicing for all enterprises. In Belgium, the potential savings associated with the generalization of e-invoicing are estimated at €3.5 billion per year. However, such savings, and the associated benefits, can only happen after several important changes take place. Most of the technology underlying these changes is available. Software tools can generate, receive and process electronic documents of all kinds, and implement the type of improvements described above. All sorts of message-exchange solutions are also available. Unfortunately, most of these components cannot inter-operate in a satisfying way. In this situation, e-invoicing is feasible only within small circles and closed networks. The Peppol project was set up in 2008 to identify the barriers to the generalization of e-procurement (including e-invoicing) and solutions to overcome them. The project was completed in 2011, delivering an interoperability framework. Since 2012, several countries implemented this framework. In 2016, Belgium was the 6th country to join. Each country sets up a Peppol authority (PA), which stands for the promotion, the diffusion and the proper use of the interoperability framework within its jurisdiction. It also contributes to the consolidation of the framework and the continuous evolution of its components.

The present page is dedicated to the Belgian Peppol Authority (PA). It addresses the following aspects:

We wish you a pleasant visit. please send your questions, comments and suggestions to peppol@bosa.fgov.be, or using the inline comment tool: highlight an area of the page, right-click, and select the -sign to popup the inline comment tool.


General presentation of the Belgian Peppol Authority (PA)

The Belgian Peppol Authority (PA) offers the following support to its correspondents and the industry: (1°) a national SMP, (2°) a Peppol Access Point providers' accreditation procedure and support, and (3°) a set of instruments to facilitate the end-to-end tests with the public sector and to track & trace the e-invoicing traffic with the public sector. All of these contributions are described in detail in the following sections.

BOSA-DT, the Department Digital Transformation (DT) of the Federal Public Service Policy and support (Beleid en Ondersteuning / Stratégie et Appui - BOSA), is in charge of the Belgian e-Government strategy, and more generally of the promotion of good practices in the IT sector in Belgium. Promoting the generalization of e-Invoicing (and, in a later phase, e-procurement), fits into its mandate. At the end of a pilot aiming at demonstrating the feasibility of Business-to-Government (B2G) e-Invoicing, in 2015, BOSA-DT concluded that an interoperability framework was a precondition for achieving that goal. Today, Peppol is the only comprehensive interoperability framework available. Peppol recognizes the need for a strong governance, including a contracts-based juridical construction where operators sign contracts with Authorities.

Since 2016, BOSA-DT took the role of Peppol Authority (PA) for the country of Belgium, recognizing the added value of a PA to stimulate adoption of e-Invoicing and e-Procurement in Belgium. Indeed, a PA contributes to the growth of Peppol Access Points and to the awareness of the advantages of the Peppol framework in its own domain. A PA also relays local concerns to the global level; this feedback mechanism is expected to have a decisive impact on the interoperability across Peppol domains.

Since then, BOSA-DT has signed agreements with over 15 operators. In close cooperation with other European, federal, regional and local authorities, BOSA-DT participates in or organizes information sessions about the challenge associated with the generalization of e-Invoicing, and its practical solutions. BOSA-DT also established a forum of Belgian Access Points, and contributed to the setup of a Business Experts Group. The Business Experts Group leads the participants community. Participants are the entities exchanging invoices. The group receives and processes questions, remarks and suggestions about the use of the framework from their perspective - most of these questions relate to the understanding and proper use of the functional specifications. The Federation of Enterprises in Belgium has accepted the responsibility to organize this business-critical knowledge sharing platform.

The Belgian Peppol Authority (PA) is composed of the following BOSA-DT staff members:

The service address is peppol@bosa.fgov.be.

This team is also responsible for the support of B2G adoption. In this particular area, BOSA-DT created the Mercurius platform, as the single gateway between the private and the public sector (more details: see section "Mercurius"); to harmonize and streamline the exchanges to the advantage of the private sector. Mercurius is instrumented in several ways, so that it is advantageous for the adoption of B2G and B2B (see more details later). In the future, BOSA-DT will increase the advantages of the Mercurius - Peppol synergies.



Introduction to the Peppol interoperability framework

When you send a document to someone through the postal services, you just put it in an envelope, put the address on it, stamp it (if required) ... and that's it. Basically, Peppol is the solution for doing the same, but between computers. This is however quite a different, more complex problem to solve in the world of computers than in the world of paper, because the ultimate goal - automation of invoice processing -  is much more sophisticated, and due to the inherent nature of computer systems - programs can hardly cope with deviations. Therefore, achieving such a universal, fully inter-operable exchange system, is a challenge. Peppol offers a framework that enables this universal "new way of posting"

The acronym Peppol stands for "Pan-European Public Procurement On Line". Historically, it was a project launched by the European Commission in 2008, in the context of the Digital Agenda for Europe, already mentioned. It completed in 2011. Its purpose was to deliver a report explaining how to overcome the major barriers in electronic procurement. It involved experts from 11 countries, for a total budget of €30 million. This very inclusive project defined the conditions for generalization of e-Procurement and selected existing practical solutions, and integrated them together in an interoperability framework. In 2012, several countries in Europe decided to implement the framework. The Peppol eDelivery network started to operate and grow. Today, more than 150 access points, 50 receiving registries and 8 Peppol authorities, cooperate to deliver a transparent, reliable and secure business documents transport service to any potential participant (= sender and/or receiver). In combination with the business interoperability principles that it promotes, the Peppol e-Delivery network is the highest potential solution today.

The Peppol framework encompasses 3 major dimensions: technical, organizational and contractual.

The technical dimension is a set of specifications. It covers document formats, message transport protocols, identification of participants and their capabilities, security mechanisms, service levels, change management procedures. Any collection of organizations agreeing to meet this set of specifications, can reach full inter-operability. The most important specification is the mandatory support of the BIS. The Business Interoperability Specification (BIS), is a collection of formats covering all procurement-related documents (order, dispatch advice, invoice, credit note, ...). The mandatory support involves that nobody can refuse to talk that lingua franca. As long as this principle is met, participants can use whatever format to communicate, that best suits their own context.
The organizational dimension defines roles and responsibilities within the community. The following roles are defined: participant, access points providers, SMP providers, Authority.
  • The Participants send and receive documents (through normalized access points).
  • The Access Points Providers operate an access point - which is the alter ego for the mailbox in the paper world - the point were the message becomes fully normalized, in line with the specifications, so as to ensure smooth, efficient exchange across the community, whatever the other participant.
  • The SMP providers operate a register of participants, a sophisticated address book containing each receivers' "capabilities" (= the list of documents-types/formats they are able to receive).
  • The Authorities stand for the promotion, the diffusion and the proper use of the interoperability framework within their respective jurisdiction (typically, a country, a region or a sector of activity). 
  • Additionally, a coordinating Authority is appointed to own and manage the common specifications. Local Authorities have the right to add local specifications to tune the framework to local conditions, as long as they don't contradict the global specifications

relationship between participants and access points

Depending on various factors, participants can choose to establish their own Access Point, or to enter into an agreement with any of the service providers connected to the Peppol Transport Infrastructure in Belgium or throughout Europe.



Interaction model between correspondents through a global open transport infrastructure

The contractual/jurisdictional dimension of Peppol consists in a set of contracts between the above mentioned actors. AP providers enter in contracts with the participants on the one hand, and with a PA on the other hand. The latter contract is similar to any such contract signed by any AP. This ensures consistent application of the Peppol specifications across distinct service providers, which is the foundation of the interoperability. Also, as explained above, some Authorities can specify additional rules to be applicable within their own jurisdiction, to a certain extent. To cover this contractually, such Authorities prepare an annex (named "Annex 5") and invite foreign AP providers to sign this Annex 5 only, in addition to the existing agreement they have signed with their own Authority.

For more information about the Peppol interoperability framework and the Peppol community, please visit www.Peppol.eu.


Peppol in Belgium: general information

This section provides the reader with additional information about the use of Peppol in Belgium. It includes key-information about the use of identifiers for domestic trade, the use of formats in the Business-to-Government (B2G) context and in the Business-to-Business (B2B) context, and the Belgian e-Invoicing Business Experts Group. All parties interested in e-invoicing, especially the Participants (in the Peppol sense explained above), are invited to read this section.

Use of identifiers

In line with the Belgian legal framework, enterprises are expected to use their enterprise number,delivered by the Belgian Crossroad Bank of Enterprises (CBE), as a primary identification number. In order to facilitate this, the Belgian Authorities have registered a specific Identification scheme ID: 0208 (*) Enterprises are strongly recommended to use this Identification scheme on their e-Invoices, as this considerably simplifies the master vendor data management, which guarantees proper routing of documents across more or less complex networks, and offers added value through integration with other e-Government solutions (such as eGOV roles management). The access to the Mercurius Portal illustrates this added value: all legal representatives of Belgian enterprises have direct access to their own invoice records on Mercurius; for large structures, the eGOV Role "Billing Officer" can be used to assign this task to certain employees. 

Identification Scheme BE:VAT, although still tolerated, should rather be used for identification in non-domestic correspondence only - and, of course, for VAT-specific invoice contents. All active entities of the Belgian Authorities are registered with their enterprise number.

(*) notice that the identification SchemeID 9956 (BE:CBE), originally assigned to the Belgian enterprise number, was replaced by the ISO-compliant code 0208, registered in the ICD-list, in th econtext of the upgrade to the Eureopean Norm for electronic invoising. The migration period runs from 1/7/2020 until 17/5/2021.

Use of formats

B2G context

Both Peppol BIS and ePRIOR implement the format designed during the CEN BII workshops. Consequently, in the context of the B2G e-Invoicing Pilot phase, the Belgian Authorities were already receiving Peppol BIS-compliant invoices. So the  integration with the Peppol interoperability framework did not modify the document format. The Belgian Authorities have no specific needs that would motivate the support of additional formats. Since the BIS format is common to all correspondents, the Belgian Authorities have registered only this format. More specifically, profile 04 (invoice) and 05 (Billing) are supported.

B2B context

The Belgian PA fully supports the initiatives to use more sophisticated formats, to better suit the needs of specific groups, especially in the private sector, that cannot be efficiently supported by the BIS or other existing formats - as long as these groups also recognize the need for a lingua franca, to support interoperability across groups. The Belgian Authorities do not limit this statement to any syntax. For example, the Belgian Authorities consider EDIFACT as a syntax to integrate in the Peppol framework, for it will benefit to increasing the reach of the interoperability framework.

Belgian e-Invoicing Business Experts Group

Interoperability is not only a technical issue. It can also be (a) a business issue, and (b) a matter of exploiting the potential of the technical solutions available. To address these concerns, a Belgian e-Invoicing Experts Group was founded in June 2017. It addresses questions such as "how should an invoice with cash discount be expressed in the BIS format", "what makes an invoice number unique", "how to cope with the multiplicity of identification schemes",.... It is a meeting point across various groups, each group having its own perspective and concerns. The confrontation of these view points in a constructive mindset, accelerates the generalization of e-Invoicing.

Business Experts from all horizons of the Belgian invoicing landscape, supported by technical experts, participate in this joint effort. The Federation of Enterprises of Belgium provides the facilities needed by the group (logistic support, extranet, moderation, ....).

Topics that have already been handled

#DescriptionConclusion
2

Rounding problem to 2 decimals
Some companies are using more than 2 decimals as unit price on existing invoices. If invoicelines are rounded to 2 decimals, rounding problems occur and the sum of the lineamounts is not the rounded amount of the total amount and the electronic invoice is rejected by Peppol BIS for this reason. 

Workgroup has reached agreement on solution based on Peppol BIS 2 (3.6.0). Since more decimals are allowed at line level in Peppol BIS 2 schematrons, LineExtensionAmount at line level may contain more than 2 decimals. The sum of those LineExtensionAmounts will be rounded in invoice totals to 2 decimals for calculating VAT. Detailed instructions will be communicated in VBO-FEB circular letter.

Cash discount
In Belgium we often use cash discount on invoices. The particular scenario for calculating VAT is not clearly expressed in Peppol BIS documentation resulting in implementation problems. Therefore a detailed explanation on the Belgian implementation in Peppol BIS should be agreed and communicated regarding this problem.

Workgroup has reached agreement on solution based on Peppol BIS 2 (3.6.0). It has been decided to use AllowanceChargeReasonCode 66 to indicate cash discount (calculated per VAT tax category) as allowance and compensate the amount by adding an additional charge at total level (also with AllowanceChargeReasonCode 66) but as VAT tax category 'E' (exempt) and VAT percent = 0. PaymentTerms/Note should contain textual explanation on payment eg. “In case of payment within xx days y% (xx.xx€)payment discount applies and PayableAmount = zzzz.zz€” (text should be specified in proper language of the invoice). Detailed instructions will be communicated in VBO-FEB circular letter. 
7Cohabitation enterprise number belgian VAT number
The coexistence of the enterprise number and the BE VAT number causes interoperability issues. Indeed, both IDs are so close to each other, that many people hardly distinguish one another, and therefore use one for another and vice versa. This creates challenges for machine to machine integration. Eventually, it has a significant impact on the cost of the solutions.
For the time being, it is not possible to reduce this cost factor.
8

Empties
Companies selling empties and taking back these empties are struggled on how they show address these empties when sending electronic invoices using Peppol BIS. The workgroup should define a scenario (with some examples) to address this problem taking into account VAT regulations on this matter. 

Workgroup has reached agreement on solution based on Peppol BIS 2 (3.6.0). Empties will be added as a separate invoiceline with VAT tax category 'E' providing the possibility use positive (charge) and negative (take back empties) quantities. Detailed instructions will be communicated in VBO-FEB circular letter
9

Reduction vouchers suppliers
Processing of reduction vouchers (often used in Belgium) is not well documented in Peppol BIS documentation so we should develop a detailed scenario how to treat this in Peppol BIS e-invoicing. 

Workgroup has reached agreement on solution based on Peppol BIS 2 (3.6.0). Reduction vouchers from suppliers can be treated as allowances and specified at invoice total level specifying "LEVERANCIERSBON" as AllowanceChargeReason and VAT tax category 'Z'. Detailed instructions will be communicated in VBO-FEB circular letter 

Topics that are being handled

#Descriptionstatus - action points
1mapping of the business scenario spare parts in the BISP. DELEU will propose a mapping at next meeting
4
taxable amount in EUR on invoice in other currency
G.DILLES to elaborate the problem description based on input at last group meeting
10rounding problem when starting from prices VAT includedproposal is being prepared in small workgroup (lead: Colruyt)

Upcoming topics

#Description
5 Peppol in B2C context
6 EU e-invoicing Standard EN 16931to be presented to the group (lead: BOSA)

Extranet of the Belgian e-Invoicing Business Experts Group (members-only):



Peppol in Belgium: Access Points

As explained above, Access Points in the Peppol world, are like mailboxes in the paper world: entry and exit points in a transport network, that guarantees an efficient service. This responsibility can be shared across multiple operators provided that they commit to common rules. In the Peppol context, a  contract, called the Access Point Provider Agreement, defines these rules. Annexes to the contract refer to the appropriate Peppol specifications. AP Providers sign this contract with a Peppol Authority. APs that already operate in another domain than Belgium, are invited to sign only the Belgian Annex 5.

The complete list of Access Point service providers and their main country of operation, is available here

Belgian version of the AP Provider Agreement

All AP providers' agreements are aligned, no matter what Authority signs them. However, to be contractually valid in the jurisdiction covered by the Authority, the latter must produce a specific version of it.

Only the Annex 5 is country-specific. The Belgian Annex 5 specifies the additional conditions and restrictions that apply to Belgium.

Here is the Belgian version of the Agreement:

Agreement:

0. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_BE.pdf

Annexes:

A1. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_Annex1_BE.pdf

A2. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_Annex2-Definitions.pdf

A3. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_Annex3-Services.pdf

A4. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_Annex4_TechnicalStandards.pdf

A5. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_Annex5_Domain_BE.pdf

A6. Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_Annex6-ChangeProcedure.pdf


Zipped Package

Click on this link to download the full package, including editables of the Agreement and the Annexes 1 and 5: Peppol_AP_Provider_Agreement_BE.zip

Onboarding of Access Point providers

Operators interested in the role of Peppol AP are invited to consider the Business case in detail before submitting their candidacy. Here is a document prepared by the Peppol consortium at the end of the Project, that supports this analysis: HowToBeAnAccessPointProvider.pdf

All prospective Peppol Access Point Providers can submit their candidature to the Belgian PA. The Belgian PA will examine their candidacy. If it fits with the mandate of the Belgian PA, and if the candidate has enrolled as a member of the Open Peppol association (visit the linked page to learn how to join), BOSA-DT will sign the Agreement.

AP providers having signed with the Belgian PA

#nameenterprise numberoperational?
2codabox0840.559.537(tick)
3dynatos0548.976.052(tick)
4Brain20462.918.840(tick)
5AdValvas Europe0883.663.268(tick)
6UnifiedPost0471.730.202(tick)
7AXI/INVOICESHARING0407.653.980(tick)
8Unit40427.604.308(tick)
9PageroNA.(tick)
10Babelway0887.442.805(tick)
11ixor0478.493.179(tick)
12Anachron BV0826.060.809(tick)
13Codit0471.349.823(tick)
14OCTOPUS Boekhoudsoftware - INARAS NV0477.525.753(tick)
15DeskDrive0644.616.963(tick)
16ARCO0449.888.671(tick)
17generix group benelux0459.718.731(tick)
18b2b grid0837.939.943
19ILGE Subscription Management BVBA0598.797.529(tick)
20Netropolix software0466.030.461(tick)
21Esker(FR)(tick)
22Billit0563.846.944(tick)
23GXS OpenText2384604 (Delaware)(tick)
24Descartes systems0467.369.853(tick)
25Digiteal0630.675.588(tick)
26Exact Cloud Development BeneluxNL854528003B.01(tick)
27B2B Router (Invinet Systemes)ES B63276174(tick)
29EdicomES B96490867(tick)
30connect solutions0843.871.294(tick)
31soluz.io0711.710.576(tick)
32Symtrax SAFR91352073910(tick)
33MySupply ApSDK:CVR 25894375(tick)
35 Basware 0500.813.770(tick)
36Tradeinterop

NL: KVK65504925

(tick)
37Odoo0477.472.701
38StorecoveNL: KVK60881119(tick)
39Breex Easybox0760.527.015
40eVerbinding - eConnect International B.V.
(tick)
41OptiPost0845.015.696
42Nestoya0755.788.366(tick)

BOSA-DT will then provide further administrative support to the candidate during the AP setup and beyond. During the AP setup, this support covers the following stages (based on a general document available at How to set up a (Post-Award) Peppol Access Point (AP) ):

#Description
I.signature of agreement: verify that the legal conditions are met for the agreement to be contractually valid (legal representative, no bankruptcy,...)
II.

issuance of Peppol Pilot certificate: the page “ Introduction to the revised PKI Certificate infrastructure and issuing process”,  provides the following information and links:

  • general description of the (new) Peppol Public Key Infrastructure (new Certificate Authority : open Peppol) and (new) enrollment process
  • link to access the Jira service Desk tool to initiate the enrollment process. Remarks: (1°) mention that you need a PILOT (test) certificate; (2°) candidates must upload their Annex 1, and company legal registration form - form belgian enterprises, this form is a pdf of their page in the Belgian CrossRoadBank of enterprises
  • link to the certificates enrollment procedure: two versions of the procedure are available, depending on your browser (FF/IE).
III.set up the software
Setting up the AP requires a preliminary analysis to define which software will be used to start developing the AP. There is information available to guide the candidate, mostly on the internet. The Belgian PA can be contacted for specific questions or to share specific information. However, the Belgian PA does not deliver technical support to candidates designing and setting up their AP. More info to be found at https://Peppol.eu/downloads/ap-guidelines/ .
IV.

conducting testing activities 
Testing involves 1 to 3 phases: (1) Peppol conformance testing - mandatory; (2) Mercurius Testing - strongly recommended, pre-requisite for any end-to-end tests, and (3) end-to-end testing - required for the Flemish Government to recognize the Service Provider as a valid intermediary.

 1. PEPPOL Conformance testing procedure - mandatory [click to expand]:

Once development is sufficiently advanced, conformance testing can take place. For this the AP candidate needs the PILOT certificate issued earlier.

Test and On-boarding can be done through the OpenPeppol Centralized Testbed. Prior following the link to the centralized Testbed make sure you have done all the pre-requisites described in the OpenPeppol Centralized Testbed User Guide before initiating the test.

Notice that the tests are not supposed to be early tests (for this you need to perform your tests locally). Instead, these tests are meant to validate the conformance of the AP technical implementation. 

 2. MERCURIUS testing procedure [click to expand]:
  1. The AP sends one or several invoices  / CNs, in his own name or on behalf of some or other of his customers, to one or several Belgian public sector entities receiving invoices/Credit notes on Peppol.
  2. The AP Provider is invited to verify if the documents duly arrived on Mercurius:
    • He should first check that AS2messages duly arrived, using the test-message lookup tool available on the mercurius portal homepage.
    • Additionally, he can log into the Mercurius Portal, to control more in details what has been received and what is the status. Please notice that access to Mercurius Portal requires meeting several conditions, listed in the remarks at the end of this paragraph.
  3. Once the necessary controls happened, please contact Mercurius support per email (mercurius@bosa.fgov.be ) to notify that the Mercurius testing occurred, providing evidences of the success of the test (eg copy of the sent documents  + files downloaded from the Mercurius portal, screenshots of the list, …

Remarks:

  • The AP Provider’s customers are supposed to know the Belgian enterprise number of their customers, or their Belgian VAT number
  • Mercurius testing must be done with production-like data. Use of fancy data is prohibited
  • If the AP choose to not use the Mercurius_AP role, then they have to agree with their customer to follow up the tests on the Mercurius side. If the customer is not Belgian either, then he/she has to agree with his own customer. The Mercurius support team does not provide that service. However, if, controlling good reception of the test documents, they encounter problems, then Mercurius support will assist
  • See also the Mercurius section for information about the technical support that Mercurius offers during the on boarding process and beyond (eg the role Mercurius AP, test message lookup tool)
 Conditions for Access Points to use the mercurius portal in TEST [click here to expand]:]

Access to Mercurius Portal requires that: (1) the AP Provider is a Belgian company and the Portal user has a Belgian eID, (2) the AP is properly configured in Mercurius as Access Point, and (3) his Portal user has the eGOV Role “Mercurius_AP”. 

  1. Discussion on the condition of Belgian nationality/Belgian registration falls outside the scope of the present procedure.
  2. To be configured in Mercurius, the AP Provider must send a configuration request to the Mercurius support per email ( mercurius@bosa.fgov.be ), containing (i.) his enterprise number (enterprise registration number in the CBE), and (ii.) the CN of the Peppol Pilot certificate.
  3. Regarding the eGov Role “Mercurius AP”, the AP provider must use the eGOV role management application to assign the role “Mercurius AP” to his Portal user(s). Notice that this role gives access to both test and production. For more guidance about this step, please contact Mercurius support per email ( mercurius@bosa.fgov.be )
 3. End-to-end testing procedure with Flemish Governement entities [click to expand]:
  • Upon successful completion of the Mercurius test phase, the Mercurius team will bring the AP Provider in touch with the eProcurement cell of the Flemish Government, who is responsible for coordinating this test phase.
  • One or several suppliers, who use the services of the AP Provider, must send 1 or more test invoices / CNs to one or several public sector entities belonging to the Flemish Government.

  • This involves the setup of test data at the customer side. Therefore, the eProcurement cell coordinates the operation.

  • Upon confirmation by the eProcurement cell of the Flemish government of the successful completion of the tests, the AP Providers having signed an AP Provider agreement with the Belgian Peppol Authority, are invited to contact the Belgian PA in order to

    • request initiation of the Peppol production certificate, by sending a mail to Peppol@bosa.fgov.be with sufficient evidence of the completion of the end-to-end tests.

    • be referenced on the Peppol in Belgium page : if the AP Provider wants to be referenced, he must provide: (a) the label he wants displayed; (b) the url on which the visitor must be redirected, (c) the CN of his Peppol Production certificate, and (d) record at least 1 Belgian participant on smp.belgium.be.

    • be configured on Mercurius as Access Point, and be able the extensive track and trace of the AP’s pass-through traffic to Mercurius

 Conditions for Access Points to use the mercurius portal in PRODUCTION [click to expand]:

Special Access to Mercurius Portal is offered to AP providers who have signed annex 5 of the Belgian AP Provider agreement. With this access,  they can track and trace all their traffic to and from Mercurius, in test and in production. This gives them full control over the delivery of their clients documents.

Technically, this access requires that: (1) the AP Provider is a Belgian company and the Portal user has a Belgian eID, (2) the AP is properly configured in Mercurius as Access Point, and (3) his Portal user has the eGOV Role “Mercurius_AP”. 

  • Discussion on the condition of Belgian nationality/Belgian registration falls outside the scope of the present procedure.
  • To be configured in Mercurius, the AP Provider must send a configuration request to the Mercurius support per email ( mercurius@bosa.fgov.be ), containing (i.) his enterprise number (enterprise registration number in the CBE), and (ii.) the CN of the Peppol Productioncertificate.
  • Regarding the eGov Role “Mercurius AP”, the AP provider must use the eGOV role management application to assign the role “Mercurius AP” to his Portal user(s). Notice that this role gives access to both test and production. For more guidance about this step, please contact Mercurius support per email ( mercurius@bosa.fgov.be )
V.issuance of Peppol PRODUCTION certificate: the page “ Introduction to the revised PKI Certificate infrastructure and issuing process”,  provides the following information and links:
  • general description of the (new) Peppol Public Key Infrastructure (new Certificate Authority : open Peppol) and (new) enrollment process
  • link to access the Jira service Desk tool to initiate the enrollment process. Remarks: (1°) mention that you need a PRODUCTION certificate; (2°) candidates must upload their Annex 1, and company legal registration form - form belgian enterprises, this form is a pdf of their page in the Belgian CrossRoadBank of enterprises
  • link to the certificates enrollment procedure: two versions of the procedure are available, depending on your browser (FF/IE).
VI.

referencing on https://digital.belgium.be/e-invoicing/PeppolinBelgium.html: all AP having signed an agreement (or annex 5)  with the Belgian PA, are eligible to be displayed on this page. To activate this possibility, please:

  • fill-out a support request. specify:
    • the object of your request: "to appear in the Peppol in Belgium Page"
    • the Common Name of your Peppol AP Production certificate
    • the name to be displayed
    • the url to which the visitor must be redirected to
  • register receivers in smp.belgium.be: as you can see on the page, the APs appear sorted, in decreasing amount of registered receivers. Therefore, you must register at least one receiver in the belgian SMP to appear on this page.
 VII.

communicate any change in certificates (Test or Prod) to Mercurius team: the CN of the Peppol certificate is the key to determine the messages that the user with the Mercurius AP role can access. To avoid perturbated access to Mercurius Portal, communicate any change of AP certificate timely to the mercurius team (use the support request form). 

NB: the change of the Peppol certificate also affects smp operations - for more details, cf section "smp.belgium.be".

Belgian Access Points Providers Forum

The PA not only recruits Peppol Access Points (AP) in its domain, it also organizes an AP Forum. This forum handles various topics related to the development of Peppol, from technical issues encountered, to actions organized by the PA, ... It is a critical interaction point between operators, where they can talk about their concerns, about their understanding of the specifications, and reach consensus required for true interoperability. It typically meets every 6-8 weeks, depending on the need to interact. All APs active in Belgium, or who expect to be active in Belgium soon, are invited to participate.

The forum is supported by :
(a) the table below summarizing the editions of the forum, decisions and suporting slides, and
(b) a web page publishing more detailed information related to the topics discussed in the forum, including migration plans, detailed specifications, testing instructions and many other useful information.

Agenda, list of presence, supporting material and wrap up of the previous Forum editions

editionpresenceagenda /slideware/streamingwrap up
19  

13:30 - 15:00


Agenda:

  1. Invoice response: old BIS (2.0) MLR phase out, IMR phase in
  2. Hermes
  3. Agreement revision
  4. Peppol Security Framework
  5. Backlog / AOB / Next forum

Slides:


18  

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas

  • Arco

  • b2b grid

  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Descartes
  • eConnect
  • Exact
  • Generix
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Nestoya
  • Netropolix
  • Odoo
  • OptiPost
  • Pagero
  • soluz.io
  • Tradeinterop
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  1. Invoice response: old BIS (2.0) MLR phase out, IMR phase in
  2. Update progress on CBE schemeID migration
  3. Hermes
  4. Old BIS Billing?
  5. Agreement revision
  6. Peppol Security Framework
  7. Backlog / AOB / Next forum

Slides:

Welcome to new forum participants/ Belgian SP: Nestoya

  1. B2G Invoice Response and MLR
    • Exact confirms availability for end to end test in test phase Q4 2021. Any other candidate to participate is welcome.
    • PA invites APs to trigger the old bis (2.0) MLR phase out together with their invoice senders (inform, sensibilize, …)
  2. CBE schemeID migration: can be closed. Remaining registrations under schemeID 9956 are assumed to be related to the old BIS (2.0) MLR, and thereby addressed within the topic above
  3. Hermes:
    • Now 7 AP agreements
    • Unprocessable invoices: sign of a business opportunity. Following the initial presentation held during the forum, APs can take contact with BOSA. BOSA will setup a program to better handle the opportunity.
  4. Old BIS billing: it is up to the APs to sort out the issue with their own customer base
  5. Agreement Revision:
    • The platinum version is available
    • The migration to the new framework will foresee an effective date irrespective of the signing date
  6. Security: APs should receive an invitation to participate the workgroup through the SPC
  7. AOB etc..:
    • E-invoicing summit 21.10: still time to register as partner
    • Next forum 26.10 13:30-15:00

17  

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas

  • b2b grid

  • Billit

  • codabox

  • Descartes

  • Digiteal

  • Dynatos

  • eConnect

  • Exact

  • Inaras

  • Ixor

  • Netropolix

  • OptiPost

  • soluz.io

  • Storecove

  • Symtrax

  • Tradeinterop

  • Tradeshift

  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • What is on your mind?

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration

  • Hermes

  • Invoice response: old BIS (2.0) phase out, IMR phase in

  • Decommissioning old BIS Billing (2.0)

  • Agreement revision

  • AOB

Slides:


Welcome to new forum participants/ Belgian SP: Breex EasyBox, eVerbinding, OptiPost

  • On your mind:
    • PA specific requirements: to be addressed in topic
    • When will e-Invoicing be mandatory in the Belgian public sector: Directive 2014/55/EU makes it  already mandatory for European public-sector receivers
    • Info: the new BIS schematrons:
      • include codes related to Brexit
      • modify rules: tax total at line level is not supported anymore (as it is an extension of the EN)
  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration:
    • 100% register receivers using 0208
    • 78% finished migration of their receivers to 0208
    • 42% removed all 9956-based RC's – a breakdown per AP of entities still publishing 9956-based RC's was made available
    • 93% of sending AP's prioritize 0208
    • 75% of sending AP's stopped using 9956
  • Hermes: SP's are invited to communicate their questions and feedback related to using Hermes, that may lead to sending without having a sender or integrator agreement
  • Invoice response: old BIS (2.0) phase out, IMR phase in:
    • Support of code AB: IMR sender must send code AB (within 3 business days of invoice reception)
    • AdValvas, eConnect and Exact have candidates for reception of IMR from pilot entities (public-sector). Additional AP's are invited to contact BOSA
  • Agreement revision:
    • BOSA confirms the trend is to sharpen information security aspects to meet state of the art practice in this field
  • AOB: next meeting: 7.9.2021 13:30-15:00

16  

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas

  • Arco

  • AXI

  • b2b grid

  • Basware

  • Billit

  • Brain2

  • codabox

  • Digiteal

  • Dynatos

  • Generix

  • Inaras

  • Ixor

  • Netropolix

  • Odoo

  • soluz.io

  • Symtrax

  • Tradeinterop

  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • Security Requirements

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration

  • Hermes

  • Invoice response: old BIS (2.0) phase out, IMR phase in

  • Decommissioning old BIS Billing (2.0)

  • AOB

Slides:

Welcome to new forum participant/ Belgian SP: Odoo

  • News on Peppol Security Requirements: the proposal is considered a good evolution.

  • CBE schemeID: It is reminded to receivers (or their AP, acting on their behalf) to proceed with cleanup of their 9956-based SMP data as soon as possible.
    After 17.5.2021 such data become pointless an can only cause confusion/misuse, as the schematrons will block any document containing such code.

  • Hermes: extending Hermes to support cross borders traffic (incoming to BE): poll results: 50/50. comments and questions raised:

    • could make the Hermes decommissioning more difficult

    • could also boost adoption

    • could also be more consistent with cross-borders nature of Peppol.
      BOSA will take this feedback into account.

  • IMR@GOV, identification of parties: need to support issuerParty / recipientParty: poll result: yes: 0%, no: 20% ; don’t know 80% comment: Commercial acceptance should be the first focus (Paul)

  • Old BIS(2.0) BILLING decommissioning:

    • B2G / G2G: decommissioned

    • Next step: B2B / G2B. BOSA encourages AP to keep educating and supporting their customers senders and receivers.

  • Next AP Forum on June 22nd.


15

13:30 - 15:00

  • Arco

  • b2b grid

  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Descartes
  • Dynatos
  • Exact
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • soluz.io
  • Storecove
  • Tradeinterop
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration
  • Hermes
  • Decommissioning old BIS Billing
  • migrating MLRv2 to IMR (business)/MLRv3 (technical)
  • AOB

Slides:

Welcome of our guest → Etat de Luxembourg and of our new AP's → Storecove and Tradeinterop. 

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration

    • Statistics presented based on the forms filled in by the AP's.

    • Moving forward with the migration.

    • BOSA reminds APs to keep filling in the complete survey each month (takes 1 minute), to contribute to the efficient tracking of the migration.

  • Hermes

    • AP whitelisting: BOSA explains the testing approach

    • BOSA will publish the testing procedure soon on the forum page and inform the APs

  • Decommissioning old BIS Billing

    • Last call before decommissioning.

    • To the question on AP's being ready by 31.3.2021 to remove old BIS, none of the Access Point came with an issue on this. So everyone is confident the Old BIS BILLING phase out of Government will go smoothly.

  • Migrating MLRv2 to IMR (business)/MLRv3 (technical) on Mercurius

    • Clarification over the limitation of the response codes to AP/RE during IMR introduction: it does not involve that the receiving system can be 100% sure that it won't receive other codes. The receiving system must therefore be able to handle the other scenarios (at least in a minimal way). no issue was raised with this clarification.

    • MLR: to the question about the specification that states that parent document sbdh data must be referenced in the MLR (not payload data), no opposite opinion is voiced. BOSA will align mercurius with this spec.

14

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas
  • b2b grid
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Descartes
  • Dynatos
  • Exact
  • Generix
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • soluz.io
  • Symtrax
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration
  • Hermes
  • Decommissioning old BIS Billing
  • migrating MLRv2 to IMR (business)/MLRv3 (technical)
  • AOB

Slides:

1. Update progress on CBE schemeID migration

  • It is reminded that the schemeID 9956 is removed in the Peppol BIS schematrons spring release. So it becomes unusable from 17/5 on. So it is a hard stop. It is communicated on the BE AP forum and through the release notes. further broadcasting of the new by APs to potentially affected stakeholders is welcome. SchemeID 9925 is out of scope - but bear in mind that Belgium PA discourages use of the VAT ID for routing purposes, as it is over-using this ID and is not sustainable. In Belgium, prefer rather the enterprise number.

  • BOSA resends the january survey request to updated distribution list

  • all SPs to fill in the survey each month (takes no more than 2 minutes time).

3. Decommissioning old BIS Billing

It is reminded that Government will remove old BIS Billing Receiving Capabilities on 31/3/2021.

4. B2G - migration from old BIS (2.0) MLR to BIS (3.0) IMR/MLR

  • AP’s provide their statistics to PA on MLR they receive - asap; by end of the week at the latest

  • BOSA provides a description of the migration approach and timing based on the outcome of the discussion and the additional stats received

13

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas
  • b2b grid
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Descartes
  • Dynatos
  • Exact
  • Generix
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • soluz.io
  • Symtrax
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration
  • Hermes
  • BIS migration completion (V2 to V3)
  • AOB

Slides:


1. Update progress on CBE schemeID migration

  • The timeline initially agreed is CONFIRMED. No need to delay Milestone B. Each AP can put whatever is needed in place to suit his own context, such that the code 9956 can be removed by then.

  • PA keeps monitoring progress through monthly surveys. To support data quality, AP's are asked to respond.

  • Exact schedule of milestone B is 17/5/2021

2. Hermes

  • Since Hermes/HSMP are LIVE, 10k participants were added on smp.belgium.be. This seems to confirm that Hermes boosts adoption.

  • AP whitelisting (technical side of the Hermes integrator agreement) is in user testing. Expect more definitive status/info/news next forum.

  • APs are enco.uraged to also consider signing Hermes integrators agreement, and contact us to this respect.

3. Decommissioning old BIS BILLING

  • Decommissioning rescheduled to 31/03/2021. Do not expect any additional delay.

  • BOSA will keep monthly monitoring decrease of old BIS invoices received by/transiting on Mercurius.

  • 2/3 of these invoice are generated by less than 20 senders. That means 2 or 3 per AP.
    Please prioritize your communication with your senders.

Actions:

  • All AP’s are requested to answer the SchemeID Migration questionnaire.

  • All AP’s are requested to act upon the ask to "get out of BISv2".

  • All AP’s can suggest a SME testimonial that could be used on e-invoicing website.

12

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas
  • b2b grid
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Descartes
  • Digiteal
  • Dynatos
  • Exact
  • Generix
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • OpenText
  • soluz.io
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration
  • Hermes & HermesSMP
  • BIS migration completion (V2 to V3)
  • AOB

Slides:

  • Update progress CBE schemeID migration
  • progression : cf slides
  • discussion:
    • consider more detailled approach proposed by Basware: Migration enablement / Migration / Migration Close
    • in this approach spring releaase would coincides 9956 deprecation, and fall release would coincide 9956 removal.
    • howeverBasware confirms spring release is technically possible.
    • Some AP's confirm spring release remains possible
    • AP's ask for clear deadlines

Conclusion: BOSA will(a)  sharpen monthly questionaire; (b) work on communication/ AP survey to reassess migration timeline feasability

2. Short update given on the HSMP Migration Token Collection Interface and hrms activation / communication support - cf slides

3. Decommissioning old BIS billing (2.0)

  • BOSA keeps communicating message and figures to SPs, to Regions
  • BOSA calls for relaying message to senders

11  

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas
  • b2b grid
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Descartes
  • Digiteal
  • Dynatos
  • Exact
  • Generix
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • OpenText
  • soluz.io
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration
  • HermesSMP - Migration Token Collection Interface test debrief
  • BIS migration completion (V2 to V3)
  • Call for success stories (SMB)
  • Peppol Agreements framework
  • Backlog
  • AOB

Slides:

  • Update progress on CBE schemeID migration

    • Call to action: SPs to answer the poll each month - NB: for the time being no answer will be considered as “NO”answer on all 3 questions

    • Complication caused by concurrent activation of Hermes (15/11) and CBESchemeID migration (9956>0208) :

      • instant poll: all expressed opinions is that they see no problem here

      • action: BOSA: further investigate the issue and give feedback.

  • HermeSMP - Migration Token Collection Interface test debrief

    • Call to action: SPs to request their dataset and perform tests

  • Decommissioning old BIS billing (2.0)

    • BOSA will keep communicating message and figures to SPs and call for relaying message to senders

  • Call for success stories (SMB)

    • Call to SP'S for suggesting success stories in the segment of SMBs to publish on efacture.belgium.be and inspire the market

10.

13:30 - 15:00

  • AdValvas
  • b2b grid
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • codabox
  • Digiteal
  • Exact
  • GenerixGroup
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • Soluz.io
  • Symtrax
  • Tradeshift

Agenda:

  • hrms activation
    • go live date
    • mtci user tests
    • agreements
    • smp.belgium.be support of migration key
  • 9956>0208 migration
  • new governance framework: update
  • BIS migration completion steps
  • AOB

Slides:

1.a) mcti user testing – the way forward:

  • the proposed approach and schedule is suitable: (1) early bird user test with direct support from Tradeshift until sept 25th and (b) wide scale user testing with BOSA DT support from sept 28th until oct 8th
  • upon request to BOSA, each tester will get an own test dataset assigned, mapped with the scenario it allows testing incl the blacklisting. Tradeshift prepares 20 of them.
  • test data will be recycled daily
  • minor changes (typos, …) to the doc will be done without formal notification. More significant changes will be notified by mail by Peppol@bosa.fgov.be
  • regression testing will be supported. A more detailed description of this will be elaborated in due time.

1.d) hrms go-live is set on nov 15th . SP are invited to make sure they can keep registering Belgian receivers afterwards, using the migration token.

2. BOSA DT will organize a monthly survey to collect figures about step 1 (no more 9956 based registrations of Receiving capabilities (RCs)), 2 (complete duplication of the 9956-based RCs onto 0208-equivalent RCs), and 3 (complete removal of old 9956-based RCs), and publish the consolidated results.

4. BOSA DT will issue a draft communication to be used by SPs as inspiration to cascade the request to their senders. The effect can be monitored in the mrcs data and will be the subject of a follow on item.


Next meeting oct 13th at 13:30 – 15:00 – save the date

9.  
  • AdValvas
  • b2b grid
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • codabox
  • Connect-Solutions
  • Digiteal
  • Esker
  • Exact
  • Inaras
  • Netropolix
  • Soluz.io
  • Tradeshift

Agenda:   

Welcome from 13:30

Closing at 14:40

Slides presented at the forum:

1.   At end of the discussion moment, there is no consensus to do more than minimal scenario (A) .

      Belgian Peppol Authority will

  • reassess the options to increase migration smoothness. This includes periodic gathering of data to monitor migration progress, discussing results with SPs during fora, and anticipating the offical phase out date.
  • confirm other documents types also fall under the migration (not only BIS Billing).

3.  e-Invoicing Summit 2020: SPs are encouraged to take advantage of this specific communication moment on the Belgian market.


8.  

On line:

  • Advalvas
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • Codabox
  • Digiteal
  • Dynatos
  • Esker
  • Exact
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • Soluz.io
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost

Agenda:   
Welcome from 13:30

  • Hermes MTC interface specs review / next steps
  • Hermes agreements review /next steps
  • Hermes sending – APs scenario: specs
  • Backlog / Next forum

Closing at 14:45

Slides presented at the forum:


  • Hermes MTC i/f specs were approved after due review round. a final specs package will be posted soon on the Belgian Service Providers / Access Point Forum page, including the testing artefacts and an update of the schedule of the next phases.
  • The sender and the integrator agreements were approved after dur review round. SPs are invited to sign the integrator agreement and proceed with the reuse of Hermes to strengthen their offering and contribution to the uptake of e-invoicing in Belgium.
  • SPs were kindly asked to provide their preferred option(s) for the modifications to the hermes sender interface to suit the integration scenario. see actions recap below.

Actions:


 7. 

 

On line:

  • Advalvas
  • B2B Grid
  • B2B Router
  • Basware
  • Billit
  • Codabox
  • Dekimo
  • Descartes
  • Digiteal
  • Dynatos
  • Exact
  • Ixor
  • Netropolix
  • Soluz.io
  • Tradeshift
  • UnifiedPost
  • Vlaamse Overheid

Agenda:

Welcome from 13:30

1.      Hermes update: impact on registering participants

2.      BIS BILLING migration : assess status and discuss practical issues encountered

3.      introduction of schemeID 0208

4.      New Service Provider agreement

5.      e-invoicing Summit 2020

AOB

Ending expected at 15:30

Slides presented at the forum:

1. Hermes

(a) please review the conventions (integrator/user) and provide feedback

(b) migration token:  please review the interface specification (swagger, test plan description) and provide feedback, incl answers to survey sent earlier (see below);  

(c) based on the feedback and questions collected during the forum, DT will produce a clarification on the exact positioning of hrms and put the topic back on the agenda

2. BIS Migration: based on the feedback and questions collected during the forum, DT will produce a more specific migration plan for review and execution.

3. SchemeID 0208 : based on the feedback and questions collected during the forum, DT will produce a more specifc migration plan for review and execution.

highlighted and migration from 9956. Will also be taken in a FUP exchange moment.

5. e-invoicing summit, AOB: was only introduced (short on time).  postponed to a later forum edition

DT Actions – fulfilled  













6.  

On-site:

  • Advalvas
  • Codabox
  • Connect-Solutions
  • Dynatos
  • Inaras
  • Ixor
  • netropolix
  • soluz.io
  • Unified Post
  • Flemish Gov (VO)

Remote:

  • B2BGrid
  • Basware
  • Brain²
  • Digiteal
  • Exact
  • SAP
  • Tradeshift

Agenda:

I. news from Belgium

II. news from Peppol

  • new branding, new website
  • migrations

AOB


Streaming of the forum:  https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=fod+spf+bosa


Slides presented at the forum:


I.4 – HRMS:

(a) emails sent by HRMS are expected to be 99,99999% bounce-back-proof and blacklisting-proof;

(b) a side effect of Hermes, is that all Belgian participants are registered in Peppol and acquiring customers becomes a matter of migrating existing participants, instead of registering new participants.

(c) registering Belgian participants into smp.belgium.be is still possible, but isn’t a condition of the BE AP agreement anymore (c) Mercurius focuses on government, primarily inbound invoicing; Hermes focuses on business outbound invoicing, and will also be useful for government entities outbound invoicing (example: De Lijn).

(d) no entity can use Hermes to send invoices unless it signs an agreement with BOSA. However, BOSA is keen to discuss agreements with service providers if it would be suitable to the sector and not compromise the model.

II.2 -  Migrations:

(a) Oxalis doesn't prevent senders to send BIS2 to BIS2+BIS3 receivers. The only issue is AS2-AS4 related. It is up to the SPs to upgrade to latest Oxalis asap.

(b) Supporting AS2 (profile 2.2) is also at discretion of the SP.

(c) Noncompliance of other SPs such as missing AS4 support, can and should be reported trough the applicable channels (in particular, openPeppol support tool) ;

(d) in order to minimize issues such as the ones that highly penalized Flemish government last month, it is advised to stop converting BIS2 to BIS3, at least until more robust convertors (validated by multilateral end-to-end tests) are available and stable.

(e) the option to provide feedback to sender or his SP in case he sends non-compliant documents, was discussed for years at all levels. To date there is no consistent  strategy / generally agreed way to deliver such feedback, neither globally nor in Belgium.

(f) the option to check a document was delivered using the underlying message ID (or the associated MDN),  is only available in mercurius-test. An APs proposes to add this function in production. BOSA DT will consider this.

(g) a SP notices that there are in fact 3 concurrent migrations: BIS2>3, AS2>AS4, and AS2.1>AS2.2. this is too much. In practice, al these migrations must be done.

(h) a SP advices to be more strict in the implementation of changes. In the telco world it works because of the strict adherence to common schedules. The question is how can we reach such a strict behavior without legal framework and with the current market maturity

(i) for B2G it is highly recommended to APs to check their traffic to mercurius using their special access (eGOV role “Mercurius_AP”). With that access, they always can check what invoices were duly received at mercurius level and correlate with their own logs, which is step 1 in troubleshooting.

AOB

  • new framework agreement: at this point BE has no special requirement except using the CBE number to register Belgian entities. (which is common to other countries, with their respective schemes)
  • remote follow up will be maintained and extended with (a) additional microphone to capture and share local attendants comments and (b) improved interactiveness with remote attendants (channel to be defined)
  • next forum May 26th at 14:00
  • 12th OpenPeppol GA and F2F: only the General Assembly will take place on March 26th 2020

5.  

  • Advalvas (AP)
  • Billit (AP)
  • Babelway (AP)
  • Basware (AP)
  • Bosa (PA)
  • Codabox (AP)
  • Octopus (Inaras) (AP)
  • Dynatos (AP)
  • UnifiedPost (AP)
  • Vlaamse Overheid 

I.Belgian Governement support of uptake of e-Invoicing

  • Progression of Peppol rollout in Belgium (1. B2G; 2. B2B): update
  • E-invoicing rollout amongst Belgian contracting authorities
  • HERMES
  • Mercurius rebranding

II.Belgian AP forum discussions

  •   Senders list (forum 4 agenda Item 7) – next
  •   Negative MDN upon invalid payload

III.Peppol service-info:

  • PKI Migration V2-V3: Timing – walk through
  • certificate request procedure, new version – legal registration form / Annex1
  • Peppol customization IDs registration policy update
  • Peppol AS2 -> AS4

IV.AOB

Slides presented at the forum:

II.Belgian AP forum discussions

  • Belgian senders list publication:
    •  forum members willing to publish senders on the list: please send csv-files to Peppol@bosa.fgov.be with at least enterprise number and name.
    • all forum members can send suggestions on next steps towards improvement and stabilisation of the senders list, based on this V1.
  • how to address invalid payload:
    • Post-Forum analyse was performed to assess feasibility of using an email feedback channel instead of the negative MDN discussed. Conclusion: is not practicable because (a) the SMP stores receivers info, while we try to feedback the sender's AP. (b) not all APs publish an email address on the SMP record
    • consequently forum members are invited to vote between following options, and explain why: 

IV.AOB

  • issues with the interpretation of the semantic model (Peppol BIS), eg store the car license plate in an inappropriate ubl data element such as sellersItemIdentification:the Business Experts Group is the forum that addresses this kind of topics, as it has a strong business orientation
  • next edition in Januari, PA to send a doodle soon and schedule
 4.  
  • Advalvas (AP)
  • Billit (AP)
  • Babelway (AP)
  • Basware (AP)
  • Bosa (PA)
  • Codabox (AP)
  • Octopus (Inaras) (AP)
  • Koalaboox (AP)
  • Netropolix (AP)
  • SAP (AP)
  • Speos (AP)
  • UnifiedPost (AP)
  • Unit4-Clogic (AP)
  • Vlaamse Overheid 

1.Progression of Peppol rollout in Belgium

2.OpenPeppol communication tools

3.Official webpage of the Belgian PA

4.Peppol certificates migration Q3/2018 

5.Implementation of the European Norm – Peppol side

6.Upcoming CEF telecom call on e-invoicing

7.Statistics on sender data

8.Practical organisation of the AP forum

9.AOB

Slides presented at the forum:

1.Peppol Rollout:

  • Vlaamse Overheid sets up action plan to identify portal senders motivations (+/-), and stimulate them to move to Peppol

4. Peppol certificates migration:

5. European Norm:

  • EN16931 = Directive 2014/55/EU obliges all public authorities in Europe to receive and process this new standard from on
  • Peppol BIS BILLING V3= CIUS of EN 16931; link: Peppol BIS Billing 3.0.1

6. CEF telecom on e-invoicing:

7. Sender stats: conclusions of the discussion:

  • key data: only sender ID and Name (NB: is also in line with privacy regulations)
  • scope: Belgian enterprises. other nationalities possible but not explicitly in scope
  • APs will send their list of senders  - only companies that already send, or are fully capable of sending.
  • PA consolidates the datasets and publishes it
  • APs to raise any issue on this by . afterwards proposal will be considered approved
  • more details (eg how exactly it will be published, update frequency, ...)  to be defined at next AP forum

8. AP forum organisation:

  • PA will communicate with 1 single point of contact for each AP.
  • AP may notify an email address/contact for this purpose
  • if AP does not notify a specific email address/contact, then contact on section 4.5 of Annex 1 will be used..

9. AOB:

  • SNI: PA contacted DIFI (conformance testing instance for Belgian PA). awaiting feedback. on agenda of next forum
  • Invoice Response general info: see slides. More details to follow in next AP forum.
 Previous AP meetings [click to expand]
editionpresenceagenda /slidewarereport
3.  
  • Advalvas (AP)
  • Agoria (Sector)
  • B2BGrid (AP)
  • Babelway (AP)
  • Basware (AP)
  • Bosa (PA)
  • Codabox (AP)
  • Dynatos (AP)
  • Inaras (AP)
  • Netropolix (AP)
  • UnifiedPost (AP)

Agenda:

  • Progression of the Peppol receivers, public and private – information (10’)
  • Need to have stats over (a) senders and (b) volumes, and how to get them – discussion (15’)
  • BIS Invoice Response (063A) – publication – information  (10’)
  • BIS support – implication on the participants registration – discussion (15’)
  • EDIFACT support – information (10’)
  • Additional instruments developed by the PA to help Access Points, and facilitate adoption of universal e-invoicing – reference: https://digital.belgium.be/e-invoicing/ - demo and Q&A (20’)
  • Upcoming communication facilities for the Peppol Belgian Domain (confluence platform ) – requirements collection (20’)
  • CEF telecom call on e-invoicing (10 million grants available for improving your platform interoperability) – more info: Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Telecom virtual Info Day   - information and call for submission (20’)
  • European Multi-stakeholders Forum on e-invoicing – new mandate 2017-2020 – Belgian representation  - information (5’)

Slides presented at the forum:

2. Need to have stats

  • AP would like to have a senders registry. Identifying companies that are capable of sending Peppol is currently not possible. The high amount of Peppol senders would be the best way to convince companies to develop receiving capabilities.
  • This is out of the Peppol scope but of course it could be developed, within Belgian domain (or globally).
  • As a first trial to address this, senders data could be collected in the context of a national reporting – as foreseen in the annex 5. Dataset defined during the meeting: sender- sender ID – Volume (for a given time period)

 4. BIS Support:

  • in order to facilitate the respect of the BIS mandatory support, in application of the conclusions of the discussion, smp.belgium.be registration interface will be modified to reject registration of formats of document types for which the corresponding BIS is not yet registered.
  • It is technically possible to register such formats in another SMP. However, (a) this is out of our span of control, and (b) Belgian receivers are expected to be registered in smp.belgium.be. our jurisdiction is limited to this scope of participants.

 6. additional instruments

  • Test message lookup tool: enter the ID of the AS2 message containing the document. Notice that the tool should also support the ID of the AS2 MDN returned by the receiving AP. The supplier misunderstood this. It will be fixed as soon as possible.
  • APs ask the smp.belgium.be online lookup to be more user friendly, incl sort functionality. This will be added in the backlog.

7. upcoming communication facilities (confluence)

  • APs ask (a) a product roadmap for mercurius and (b) a Peppol hot issues log
2,  
  • Advalvas (AP)
  • Agoria (Sector)
  • Babelway (AP)
  • Basware (AP)
  • BRAIN2(AP)
  • BOSA DT (PA)
  • Codabox (AP)
  • Codit (AP)
  • Dynatos (AP)
  • Ixor (AP)
  • Koalaboox (AP)
  • MVG (PA)
  • Speos  (AP)
  • PAGERO (AP)
  • UnifiedPost (AP)
  • UNIT4(AP)

Agenda:

  • Status SMP.belgium.be
  • Status B2G
  • Status tests B2G
  • Business agreements
  • Setup Business Experts Workgroup

Slides presented at the forum:

N.A.

1,
  • Advalvas (AP)
  • ARCO (AP)
  • ASA (PA)
  • Babelway (AP)
  • Basware (AP)
  • Codabox (AP)
  • Codit (AP)
  • Dynatos (AP)
  • Fedict (PA)
  • Ixor (AP)
  • Koalaboox (AP)
  • MVG (PA)
  • PAGERO (AP)
  • Speos  (AP)
  • UnifiedPost (AP)
  • UNIT4(AP)

Agenda

  • Status roll out e-Invoicing within Belgian authorities
  • My eGOV Roles management and Mercurius web interface
  • Contents of the invoices : requirements from the public sector
  • Tests: structured approach – Peppol conformance testing, end2end Testing– how to avoid wasting time
  • Invoice Response - MLR
  • New from the business – business discussion forum
  • Smp.belgium.be – record Belgian participants

Slides presented at the forum:

1. Status Roll out e-invoicing within Belgian Authorities.

Status of the roll out by Serge Libert (for the federal) and Johan Van Steelandt (for Flanders).

Status of the roll out in Brussels and Wallonia by Luc Gathy.

Brussels will choose for Mercurius and for intelligent scanning.

Wallonia is updating their back office system to receive e-invoices.

2. My eGov Roles management and Mercurius web interface

Serge Libert explains the possibilities of the eGov Roles Management and shows the new website.

https://digital.belgium.be/e-invoicing

 3. Contents of the invoices: requirements of the public sector.

Peppol BIS/CEN BII fulfill most of the requirements so far

However there’s an agreement to set a meeting with business experts in order to look for answer to specific issues.   (See 6.)

4. Tests, overview.

  • Peppol conformance testing
  • Mercurius testing
  • End to End testing. (Procedure from the Flemish Region).  (See annex)

Remarks:

  • Sometimes there’s a discrepancy between the promotion initiatives by an authority and the actual readiness to receive e-invoices.
  • End to end test will continue with a selection of the Flemish back offices.

5. Invoice response – MLR

New Peppol Bis document on invoice responses expected by  4th quarter of 2017.

Explanation on the MLR by Serge Libert. see slides

6. New from the business – business discussion forum

Experts will be invited for a meeting on several issues as:

  • Cash discount (a) transport (b) automation
  • VAT exemptions (a) transport (b) automation
  • Spare parts VAT liftups (a) transport (b) automation

 7. SMP.BELGIUM.BE

  • Only for enterprises with a Belgian CBO-number.
  • Access points should support foreign SMP for customers and suppliers from abroad.

 8. Frequency of the meeting -  requirements

  • at the start, each two months.
  • later on, each three months.

Hot issues affecting the network operations

This section registers the events causing trouble to some or all of the network operations. ex: an AP certificate that expired, troubles with a SMP or the SML, ...

Watching the Belgian PA page makes it possible to AP providers to get notified of such issues, and to follow up their progress.

Timingdescriptionstatus
Tue Feb 19 2019 20:00 - 23:59 

Application server maintenance in production.
• Impact on DNS : None
• Impact on SML : SML will be down during intervention.

closed
Sun Feb 10 2019 10:00 - 14:00 Application server maintenance in acceptance.
• Impact on DNS : None
• Impact on SML : SML will be down during intervention.
closed
Thu Jan 17 2019 Survey for Peppol Access Points on AS4 market readiness: Click here to participateclosed
Mon Dec 17 2018 08:00 - ...Problems when communicating SMP changes to SML/SMK. OPENPeppol (CEF) is working on a solution.closed
 Old items. Click here to expand...
Timingdescriptionstatus
Fri Dec 14 2018Other Peppol BIS version 3.0 documents (not Billing) are now published, together with the migration plan.done 
Sat Dec 15 2018 08:00 - 11:00OPENPeppol: Database Server Maintenance in Production.
Impact on DNS : None - Impact on SML : SML will be down during intervention.
closed
Wed Dec 5 2018 19:00 - 23:59 CETOPENPeppol: A maintenance will be carried out on Application servers in production environment.
Impact on SML : SML will be down during intervention.
closed
Thu Nov 15 2018 12:00 CETThe Fall 2018 release of the Peppol Post-Award artefacts (BIS documents and validation artefacts) are mandatory in use.done
Fri Nov 2 2018 13:00 - 18:00 CETOPENPeppol: Database Server Maintenance in Acceptance – SMK - updates in smp-test.belgium.be will return following error:
"[BELMA-208] Unable to register Peppol participant " + participant.getBusinessIdentifier() + " to SMK " + smlId;
closed
Wed Oct 3 2018 18:00 - 19:00 CETOPENPeppol: Planned Maintenance – SML - Certificate Renewal in Production - updates in smp.belgium.be will return following error:
"[BELMA-208] Unable to register Peppol participant " + participant.getBusinessIdentifier() + " to SML " + smlId;
closed
Wed Oct 1 2018 18:00 - 19:00 CETOPENPeppol: Planned Maintenance – SML - Certificate Installation in Acceptance - updates in smp.belgium.be will return following error:
"[BELMA-208] Unable to register Peppol participant " + participant.getBusinessIdentifier() + " to SML " + smlId;
closed
Fri Sep 28 2018 20:00 - 21:00 CET

OPENPeppol: Planned Maintenance – SML - Database Server upgrade in Production - updates in smp.belgium.be will return following error:
"[BELMA-208] Unable to register Peppol participant " + participant.getBusinessIdentifier() + " to SML " + smlId;

closed
Sat Sep 22 2018 08:00 - 11:00OPENPeppol: Planned Maintenance – SML - Database Server upgrade in Production - updates in smp.belgium.be will not be pushed to SMLclosed
Sun Jul 1 2018 morningOnly TLSv1.2 will be available on Babelway Access Point (Mercurius) and smp.belgium.be/smp-test.belgium.beclosed
Sun Apr 22 2018SNI support was added on Babelway Access Point (Mercurius) - release 4.36closed
Fri Mar 09 2018 at 08:00 ... 14 marDocument type registration not possible in smp.belgium.be / smp-test.belgium.be - only company registrationclosed

Peppol in Belgium: Software industry

Although they are not formally identified in the Peppol framework (meaning, there is no specific role for this class of actor), the software industry is key to the realization of the above described vision. The software industry will develop the tools that will take advantage of the interoperability framework, to build affordable, reliable and secure solutions to make "touchless invoicing" a reality, removing the administrative burden currently associated with invoice processing. This statement underlines that actions to promote the Peppol interoperability framework, must include the software industry.

The Flemish Government notably initiated this thread in 2015, by publishing the list of software solutions that manage to send invoices to them, through Peppol/Mercurius, on the e-invoicing project webpage.

The European Union developed a program called "Connecting Europe Facility (CEF)". This program re-routes public money to projects contributing to innovations such as e-invoicing.

 Mercurius

The Belgian public sector started promoting e-Invoicing in 2012. During an initial pilot project (2013-2014), the government installed Mercurius, a Business to Government (B2G) e-Invoice exchange solution, based on the ePRIOR platform developed and used by the European Institutions. At the end of the pilot, Belgium decided to (1°) keep Mercurius as the single gateway between the private and the public sector, and (2°) to integrate with Peppol, going one step further towards interoperability. The combination of Peppol and Mercurius generates many synergies. Peppol enables universal exchange. Mercurius offers various added-value tools to the Belgian community, that demonstrate the feasibility of the Peppol approach and facilitate its adoption.

Mercurius and the Public-Private ecosystem of e-Invoicing

The main mission of Mercurius is to help integrate the public sector entities. At the same time, it promotes harmonization of the interface, so economic operators can use the same interface for all their public sector customers.

A TEST version of Mercurius is available, to offer all interested parties the possibility to perform all kinds of tests of their systems, including end to end testing with accounting systems of the federal and other governments, which is still a very important step in the setup of efficient IT solutions.



the Mercurius Portal Homepage

A portal was added to this platform. Thanks to its integration with the existing national authentication and authorization tools provided by the public sector, the Mercurius Portal gives access to an advanced "track-and-trace" function for the invoices sent, from the sender - and for the invoices received, by the receiver. This tool creates the transparency needed to build the trust in the Peppol interoperability framework, and fine-tune its use.This portal is also accessible to intermediaries/service providers and customer representatives, so that all parties share the same information. The portal also facilitates communication (including user support requests) and dissemination of all sorts of information about e-invoicing, including Peppol. Finally, the portal offers a manual invoice/credit note submission function, so that suppliers not yet ready to send e-invoices are not penalized.

Mercurius has a support team that handles residual issues, that can’t be resolved by the AP providers and/or the correspondents, in self-service mode using the portal. The support team receives support requests, preferably through the online assistance request form especially designed for Mercurius users and stakeholders, available through the portal homepage.

Mercurius was also extended with an xml-to-pdf conversion function. The idea is to avoid penalizing early adopters of Peppol in the private sector, in cases where some of their public sector customers need time to implement their connection with Mercurius. These receivers get a pdf instead of the xml sent by the supplier - this is of course a transitional measure, awaiting for the customer to fully integrate.

Recently, Mercurius was instrumented with a test messages lookup facility. Participants and IT solution providers using the public sector customers to test their e-Invoicing solution, can use this tool to lookup if their test invoices were correctly received, without having to log into the mercurius portal. This leverages the use of the Mercurius infrastructure for Peppol testing purposes.


Smp.belgium.be, the Belgian Service Metadata Publisher

From January 1st 2017, the Belgian public sector also offers a national SMP,  free of charge for registration of receiving capabilities. This allows the Belgian PA to: (a) publish information about the Peppol receivers in Belgium, and (b) to offer a promotional window to the access providers who register participants: so they can publish a link to their service offering free of charge, and the top-5 Access Points are also put in the spotlight, on the following page:

https://digital.belgium.be/e-invoicing/PeppolinBelgium.html

The technical documentation of the registration interface is available here.

All Belgian parties receiving documents on Peppol are expected to use this SMP to register their receiving capabilities. Notice that Belgian enterprises are supposed to be duly registered in the Belgian Crossroad bank of Enterprises. This is a prerequisite to be registered in smp.belgium.be.

In practice:

  • AP providers are responsible for registering the receiving capabilities of the participants they service. 
    From a contractual perspective, the annex 5 of the Belgian AP providers agreement, specifies that all Belgian participants are to be registered in smp.belgium.be. Once AP Providers have signed this agreement, they are invited to register their Belgian participants in smp.belgium.be
  • in application of the Peppol standard discovery mechanisms, the sending APs look up SML/smp to:
    • check the presence of the receiver on the Peppol transport infrastructure,
    • look up his receiving capabilities: the document types and formats that the receiver can process, and
    • locate the receiving AP, where the documents must be sent.
  • If properly used,  this mechanism ensures that all documents are properly routed through the transport infrastructure, and that the proper interchange format is always selected.

In order to offer end-to-end testing capabilities, the PA also installed a test-SMP under the name smp-test.belgium.be using the same receiving capabilities as the real SMP but accessible through SMK instead of SML (see Peppol glossary).

AP certificate renewal - information

Certificates are used  to secure exchanges between Peppol APs. Such certificates have to be renewed from time to time, either for security reasons, or for some other valid reason.

Whenever an AP sends a document to a receiver (on behalf of a sender, of course), it looks after the receiver metadata (receiving AP, receiving capabilities) in the receiver's smp,  pointed by the sml. To deliver the routing information requested by this AP, the smp uses the receiving AP certificate information. Consequently changes of the certificate of an AP may affect the AP operations severely.

Since 2018, certificates updates resulting from the classical renewal process, have no such impact. This is because since then the Common Name (CN) field  in the renewed certificate, is the same as in the original certificate.

IF an AP receives a certificate with a new CN, then the recorded receivers metadata in smp.belgium.be, must be updated. When the AP is not in position to perform the update using the smp.blegium.be API (*), such changes can be requested to smp.belgium.be operations team.

(*) this is the case when the original certificate is expired. In that case the security will block the necessary initial step of deleting the participants metadata.

As explained earlier, such certificate change also affects access of the AP's representatives to the Mercurius Portal →  To communicate the change to the smp.belgium.be operations team and to the Mercurius team , please fill in a Mercurius support request specifying  (a) the CN of the formerly used certificate (APP_1000....) and (b) the new certificate (preferably in a txt file).

Additional sources of information

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