Monday 20 May 2019

UAE to launch tax refund scheme for tourists on Nov 18

DUBAI, November 12, 2018

Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Minister of Finance, and Chairman of the Board of the Federal Tax Authority, FTA, has set out the implementation dates for phases one and two of the Tax Refunds for Tourists Scheme, said a report.

Decision No. 02 of 2018 comprises of seven clauses and stipulates that Value Added Tax (VAT) refund claims shall be provided by retailers participating in the Tax Refunds for Tourists Scheme, said a report in WAM.

From November 18, an overseas tourist may get a refund of the VAT at the Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Sharjah International Airports. By December 16, the scheme will be extended to other airports and land and sea ports in the UAE.

According to the decision, the Federal Tax Authority (FTA) may collect fees from overseas tourists applying for the tax refund, namely, an administrative fee amounting to 15 per cent of the VAT amount refunded to the overseas tourist, and a fixed fee of Dh4.8 ($1.3) for every claim.

The scheme operator then deducts these fees from the total amount to be refunded to the overseas tourist on behalf of the FTA. The maximum cash amount that can be returned to a tourist for a 24-hour period is Dh10,000 ($2,722.1).

The decision also stipulates that tax cannot be refunded under the scheme unless the total value of tax-inclusive purchases issued by the same Taxable Person is Dh250 ($68) or more, the report said.

Three categories of goods are to be excluded from the Tax Refunds for Tourists Scheme, namely: Any goods that the overseas tourist does not have with them once leaving the UAE; goods that were entirely or partially consumed in the UAE; and motor vehicles, boats and aircraft.

Furthermore, the decision determined five steps that retailers must follow when a customer asks to make a purchase under the Tax Refunds for Tourists Scheme, including conducting the necessary due diligence to verify whether the customer is an "overseas tourist" and that they are in the UAE when making the purchase.

The procedure also calls for determining if the supply was made in a period not exceeding 90 days on the date on which the refund claim is requested. Retailers must also verify that the customer is 18 years of age or older before issuing them with refund claim.

Tags: UAE | Tax refund |

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