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GCC Agrees Framework For Excise Duties, VAT

by Lorys Charalambous, Tax-News.com, Cyprus

22 June 2016


Companies in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) should take action now to prepare for the implementation of value-added tax (VAT) and excise tax legislation, according to PwC.

In a meeting on June 16, 2016, the GCC Ministers of Finance approved in principle the VAT and excise tax treaties, providing a common framework for the development of national regimes. The formal announcement of the treaties is expected in the last quarter of this year.

The agreement paves the way for the introduction of these taxes in the GCC from January 1, 2017, for excise duty, and January 1, 2018, for VAT, respectively.

Jeanine Daou, Middle East Indirect Taxes Partner, said: "The introduction of VAT and excise tax constitute an important policy reform aiming to help GCC governments achieve medium to long term social and economic policy goals, and reduce reliance on hydrocarbon revenues. Approval of the treaties is an important development as it sets out common principles that will guide the application of VAT and excise tax at a national level by each individual member state. Companies should take action now, if they have not already, to prepare for the implementation of the new tax systems and be ready by go-live date."

The GCC is comprised of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, and Oman.

TAGS: United Arab Emirates | compliance | Finance | tax | economics | value added tax (VAT) | tax compliance | Kuwait | Saudi Arabia | fiscal policy | Bahrain | Qatar | oil and gas | excise duty | legislation | tax rates | tax reform | Gulf Cooperation Council | Oman | services | Middle East | Tax

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