'No favours': UAE rules out VAT grace period for firms

Companies in the United Arab Emirates will not be given additional time to implement value-added taxation, according to a government minister.
“There will be no favours to anyone,” Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, minister of state for financial affairs, told members of the advisory Federal National Council on Tuesday in Abu Dhabi.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE plan to impose the levy from January 1 as they seek to increase non-oil revenue to counter the impact of low crude prices on public finances.

Analysts and businessmen say many companies are racing to prepare for the tax and may not be ready in time for the start date.
Al Tayer played down the effect of the levy on the second-biggest Arab economy, saying it will shave less than 0.5 percent off gross domestic product in the first year.
“The impact on existing and new investments is negligible,” he said.


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