What is the update?
The Federal Tax Authority (“FTA”) has issued Cabinet Decision no. 1 of 2020 (“Cabinet Decision”) on the Refund of VAT on Goods and Services for countries and organizations participating in Expo 2020 Dubai. The Cabinet Decision cancels Cabinet Decision no. 1 of 2019, which was issued earlier by the FTA on the refund of VAT for participants for Expo 2020. In the Cabinet Decision, the FTA clarifies in more detail which participants are entitled for a VAT refund and which expenses are subject to the VAT refund.
These changes may have an impact for the participating countries or intergovernmental organizations of the Expo 2020 (“Participants”) which will take place as of October this year.
VAT refund eligibility and process
The UAE government has introduced a separate VAT refund application process for the Participants. The Participants may apply for a VAT refund on the input tax incurred on import of goods or services and for expenses directly related to the Expo 2020.
The Participants can apply for a VAT refund for expenses in direct connection with Expo 2020, for example:
Based on the changes in the Cabinet Decision, the FTA extends the scope for VAT refund for Participants and clarifies the VAT refund application process with the Bureau Expo 2020 Dubai.
For whom is it relevant?
The update is relevant for the countries that have established a representative office in the UAE for the organization of their Expo 2020 site. Many of the Participants have already started the preparations of the Expo 2020, for example with the construction of their Expo 2020 site. In the preparation process, expenses may have been incurred on which local VAT is paid by the Participant.
The Participants should: