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UAE VAT reclaims deadlines

  • Sep 23, 2019 | Richard Asquith

Foreign businesses incurring United Arab Emirates VAT, and who do not have a local VAT registration, may be able to reclaim this VAT on certain activities. This largely covers recipients of exhibition and conference services, including:

a) granting the right to occupy space for the purposes of conducting an exhibition or conference; and 

b) granting the right to access, attend or participate in an exhibition or conference. 

The following conditions must be met for the supplier to be able to claim the refund from the Federal Tax Authority (FTA): 

  • The supply is of Exhibition and Conference Services–that is, either of the grant of the right to access, attend or participate in an Exhibition or Conference or the grant of the right to occupy space for the purposes of conducting an Exhibition or Conference. 
  • The recipient of the Exhibition and Conference Services does not have a Place of Establishment or a Fixed Establishment in the State. 
  • The recipient of the Exhibition and Conference Services is not registered for VAT or required to register for VAT in the UAE. 
  • The Supplier has obtained a written declaration from the recipient confirming that the recipient does not have a Place of Establishment or a Fixed Establishment in the UAE, and is not registered or required to register for VAT in the UAE. 
  • The recipient of the Exhibition and Conference Services has not paid the amount of VAT to the Supplier. 

The latest reclaim period end is 1 October 2019. Reclaims may be posted online with the Federal Tax Authority website. The recipient will have to first confirm that its country of residence has a tax reciprocity agreement with the UAE to ensure it is entitled to make a claim.

Note: in certain situations, the Supplier will be able to refund the VAT amount that it charges on the Services as long as the Supplier does not collect the VAT amount.


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VP Global Indirect Tax
Richard Asquith
VP Global Indirect Tax Richard Asquith
Richard Asquith is the former VP Global Indirect Tax at Avalara
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