The Ministry of Finance in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has recently launched a series of Value Added Tax (VAT) and excise awareness sessions to present to advisors and businesses on the progress of VAT and excise implementation. The first such session is aimed at the advisory community, followed by later sessions aimed at the general business community. Full details of the sessions can be found at https://mof.gov.ae/en/pages/workshops.aspx.
These sessions are an important step towards the implementation of VAT and excise tax and will provide businesses with information to continue their planning process for VAT and excise. “Relevant individuals should visit the website and consider if they qualify for one of the sessions and register when they can” said Bruce Hamilton, Director, Indirect Tax, Deloitte Middle East.
VAT implementation is likely to be a significant challenge for most businesses operating in the Gulf Cooperation Council, and a sensible first step is to quantify the impacts and communicate these across the business. Deloitte considers that business impacts can generally be categorized in three broad areas: on a strategic level affecting the overall business, on an operational level influencing the day-to-day operations and on a financial level impacting the overall costs and cash flow.
“Deloitte expects that the process for full implementation will typically span at least two to three years to be fully effective and businesses that fail to prepare in adequate time will inevitably be under pressure to comply during the transition period.” explains Nauman Ahmed, Partner and Middle East Tax leader at Deloitte.
Deloitte tax experts are working within the Gulf region to support businesses, and to prepare them for the upcoming changes in the most effective way. The full VAT implementation process developed addresses all of the business considerations and includes VAT function operating model design, solution implementation, and compliance readiness among others.