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VAT is coming to the GCC

Date Posted: 3 July, 2016

head in the sand

Value Added Tax is fast approaching us in the GCC. We can no longer put our head in the sand following Government announcements confirming that the 5% VAT will be implemented from 1st January 2018. These are exciting times as GCC Countries diversify their revenue streams to boost the regional economy which can only be good news!

VAT is an indirect consumption based tax that moves along the product supply chain and is an effective way of boosting regional revenues. In turn, businesses need to minimise any impact on profitability as well as exercising careful controls around compliance.

Even though the introduction of VAT will not be live until 2018, there is a lot of groundwork to be done to prepare for this huge change. Businesses need to implement effective reporting systems, change their processes and add skillsets within their Accountancy & Finance teams to ensure a smooth roll out.

Businesses also need to anticipate the impact on financial performance as VAT will have an effect on pricing and therefore profitability, so the expertise is an absolute must to ensure that working capital is not affected. Younis Al Khouri, undersecretary to the UAE’s Ministry of Finance, has estimated VAT will generate Dh12 billion in the first year alone.

A leading journal has reported there will be around 5000 job opportunities created due to the GCC taxation changes. The Tax Division at Mackenzie Jones is currently representing a number of senior professionals who are best placed to help businesses across the Middle East develop their tax framework ahead of time. We are reaching out through our global network further developing our capability to cope with the growing demand within this space.

We are keen to hear from Tax Professionals from around the globe who feel ready to take on an exciting opportunity in a growing market. If you would like to discuss our potential opportunities please email us at for a confidential discussion.

View our jobs board for latest opportunities for tax positions in the GCC.

Get in touch with:

David Mackenzie

Group Managing Director