Abu Dhabi, UAE

The Week Middle East - - News -

VAT on all food: The UAE will ap­ply an up­com­ing value added tax to all food items and util­ity bills, ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cials. Upon first an­nounc­ing the 5% tax in 2015, the coun­try had said that 100 food items would be zero-rated. This mea­sure has now been scrapped the Fed­eral Tax Author­ity’s di­rec­tor gen­eral, Khalif Al Bus­tani, con­firmed. Pub­lic trans­port, com­mer­cial air­lines, in­vest­ment-grade pre­cious met­als, the sup­ply of crude and nat­u­ral gas, ed­u­ca­tion and health­care will be ze­rorated. The cost of liv­ing in the coun­try is expected to in­crease 2.5% next year af­ter the tax is in­tro­duced, ac­cord­ing to some fore­casts. The UAE’s min­is­ter of econ­omy, Sul­tan Al Man­souri, has said the tax could gen­er­ate Dh­s12bn ($3.26bN) for the coun­try in its first year and Dh­s20bn ($5.4bn) in its sec­ond year.

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