Qatar formally sets up a General Tax Authority to formulate and implement taxes

Qatar formally sets up a General Tax Authority to formulate and implement taxes

By QLReporter

With the start of the new year, Qatar had implemented new excise taxes for cigarettes (100%), energy (100%) and soft drinks (50%) as well as alcohol (100%).

The country has established a new entity — the General Tax Authority (GTA) — to implement all tax laws and improve tax compliance in the country, reported Gulf Times.

The GTA will function as a separate entity under the supervision of the Ministry of Finance and is in line with the country’s plans to reduce dependence on hydrocarbon resources.

GTA has been mandated with authority to implement all tax laws in the country and set up related bylaws, procedures and instructions and be responsible for their implementation, review and assess tax return forms and collect taxes from entities.

GTA has also been charged with representing Qatar in relevant international and regional organisations and at international conferences and events and sign tax agreements with other countries to encourage economic cooperation and joint investments.

Meanwhile, GTA has said that the new excise taxes that came into effect during the new year was a real investment in human capital.

The excise tax was designed to help build a healthier society by discouraging the consumption of harmful goods, said the GTA, according to Qatar Tribune.

GTA said the taxation system also laid the foundation for a better economic future that is strong and sustainable.

The GTA will regulate the work of the taxation system through financial instruments that positively influence the level of welfare of citizens and residents alike, as well as improve public services such as healthcare, education, roads and infrastructure. 

Part of the GTA’s mandate will be to implement the Income Tax law (number 24 of 2018) relating to corporate income tax and the Excise Tax law (number 25 of 2018).

The Income Tax law amends the previous law on corporate income tax and stipulates that salaries and wages of citizens and residents shall not be subject to any tax and grants exemptions for equity shares listed on a recognised stock exchange, profits of banking deposits and companies working in the agricultural sector and fisheries. 

Marine and aerial transportation are also exempted from tax on condition of reciprocity, an official release yesterday said. 

The corporate income tax on foreign companies working in Qatar also remains the same at 10% of taxable income.

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