Transfer Pricing Audits in the GCC

Myth or a hard reality?

With the current pandemic affecting all GCC countries, GCC economies facing headwinds and lower anticipated revenues in future years from oil, there are mounting pressures on tax authorities to collect tax revenues to fund government expenditure and balance budget deficits. Given this context, are Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) operating in the GCC facing TP audits in reality? And if so, what information is usually sought by tax authorities during such audits? How do they use and interpret such information submitted during such TP audits?

In this article we provide an overview of the current TP audit environment, specifically focusing on the following aspects:

  • The current TP environment in the countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC);
  • The triggers of a TP audit and an overview of the audit process; and
  • Insights on administration of the GCC TP regulations and how audits and disputes are being managed by tax authorities.

This article focuses on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (“KSA”), State of Qatar (“Qatar”) and the Sultanate of Oman (“Oman”). References to other countries in the GCC are also made throughout this article. 

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