GCC Indirect Tax Weekly Digest


GCC Indirect Tax Weekly Digest

April 13, 2021

Oman developments

VAT go-live date this Friday, 16 April 2021

Value Added Tax (VAT) will be implemented in Oman in just three days, on Friday, 16 April 2021.

At this date, the provisions of the Oman VAT legislation will come into effect, and businesses with more than OMR 1 million in annual supplies must be able to charge VAT where applicable, issue tax invoices, and meet all other VAT compliance obligations. Businesses with lower annual supplies will be required to meet their obligations by the applicable registration date, as per the following:

Value of annual supplies
(actual or expected)

Period to apply 

Registration date

More than OMR 1,000,000

1 Feb 2021 to
15 Mar 2021

16 Apr 2021

OMR 500,000 to
OMR 1,000,000

1 Apr 2021 to
31 May 2021

1 Jul 2021

OMR 250,000 to
OMR 499,000

1 Jul 2021 to
31 Aug 2021

1 Oct 2021

OMR 38,500 to
OMR 249,999

1 Dec 2021 to
28 Feb 2022

1 Apr 2022

Businesses that have not yet begun preparations for the implementation of VAT in Oman should do so as a matter of priority, in order to allow time to bring the business to a compliant position by the applicable registration date.

VAT social protection initiatives announced

A reputed news agency in the Sultanate of Oman has announced that His Majesty Sultan Haitham Bin Tarik has recently approved the implementation of a number of social protection initiatives. The VAT initiatives and concessions include:

  1. Expansion of the scope of zero-rated food items from 93 to 488 commodities. The full list of items is available here.
  2. The government will bear the cost of VAT imposed on electricity and water services for all citizens who own two accounts or less of the residential category, including families who already fall under the targeted government support category.
  3. Increase the amount of subsidized and consumed fuel by National Support Card holders from (200) liters to (400) liters per month. The government will then bear the cost of VAT for the specified amount to ensure it remains at par with the pre-VAT rates.

More guidelines on how the above initiatives will be implemented, including the expanded list of zero-rated food items, is expected to be released in due course. 


UAE developments 

VAT Regulations amended

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) VAT Regulations have been amended for the second time since the implementation of VAT in 2018.

Article 66(3) of the VAT Regulations, on new residence refunds for UAE nationals, has been amended to require the refund claim to be made within 12 months from the date of completion of the newly built residence, rather than within six months as previously required.

The VAT Regulations were previously updated in 2020 to amend the rules
relating to exports of services.

Temporary zero-rating of Covid-19 PPE extended to 31 December 2021

The temporary zero-rating of certain Covid-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) has been extended to 31 December 2021. The initial period of zero-rating was 1 September 2020 to 28 February 2021.

As per VAT Public Clarification VATP025, the supply or import of certain PPE is zero-rated from 1 September 2020 to 31 December 2021. VATP025 replaces VATP023, which set out the initial period of zero-rating.

FTA publishes business bulletin on the automotive sector

The UAE Federal Tax Authority (FTA) has published a business bulletin on the automotive sector.

The document summarizes the VAT rules applicable to businesses in the automotive sector, such as new and used car dealers, and providers of servicing and spare parts.

The business bulletin clarifies a number of issues specific to the automotive sector, including application of the profit margin scheme, and the applicability of VAT on gifts, giveaways, repair services, spare parts, and repairs performed on vehicles in the UAE which are charged to a foreign manufacturer.


Qatar developments

Deloitte webinar: Recent Customs and Global Trade developments in Qatar

The Customs and Global Trade landscape in the State of Qatar is rapidly evolving, and businesses need to be aware of the actions required to accommodate these developments.

On 5 January 2021, the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, KSA, and UAE) signed a “solidarity and stability” agreement during a summit meeting in the Saudi city of al-Ula. The announcement of the agreement was accompanied by statements from Bahrain, KSA, and the UAE, together with Egypt, that they would immediately restore full diplomatic relations with Qatar.

In the light of the above, Deloitte will be hosting a 60-minute webinar on Monday, 19 April 2021 at 11:00am (Dubai time) where we will discuss the Customs and Global Trade developments in Qatar and how it may impact businesses. Our team of experts will discuss the following topics:  

  • Overview of the GCC Customs Framework;
  • Qatar Free Zones;
  • Post Clearance Audit (PCA);
  • Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) in Qatar; and
  • Key takeaways.


This digest is for information purposes only and should not be construed as advice. It does not necessarily cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. You should not act upon the contents of this alert without receiving formal advice on your particular circumstances.

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