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IMF Recommends Tax Reforms For Lebanon

by Lorys Charalambous, Tax-News.com, Cyprus

18 May 2015


The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said that there is scope for Lebanon to increase tax in a fair manner, including by broadening the tax base and strengthening compliance, ensuring that all economic sectors share the burden.

The Fund said in a statement following its 2015 Article IV Consultation mission to Lebanon that ongoing efforts by the Ministry of Finance to introduce more discipline to tax collection activities are encouraging, but are not sufficient.

Measures should include the introduction of a capital gains tax on real estate transactions, and increased withholding tax on interest income and corporations, the statement said.

The IMF also said that the Lebanese authorities need to seize the opportunity afforded by low oil prices to remove the value-added tax (VAT) exemption on diesel immediately and increase gasoline excise duties.

It also recommended a modest increase in the VAT rate, by one percentage point.

TAGS: compliance | Finance | tax | economics | value added tax (VAT) | tax compliance | interest | fiscal policy | revenue guidance | International Monetary Fund (IMF) | corporation tax | withholding tax | tax reform | Lebanon

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