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Corporate tax in UAE: ministry issues 6 rules

With the UAE’s impending corporate tax in June, the Ministry of Finance has issued a ministerial decision to help reduce tax burden and compliance costs for start-ups and small businesses.

Here are the six new rules under the Small Business Relief ministerial decision of the Ministry of Finance:

1. Taxable individuals who are UAE residents can claim Small Business Relief where their revenue in the relevant tax period and previous tax periods is below Dh3 million for each tax period. This means that once a taxable person exceeds the Dh3 million revenue threshold in any tax period, then the Small Business Relief will no longer be available.

2. The Dh3 million revenue threshold will apply to tax periods starting on or after June 1, 2023 and will only continue to apply to subsequent tax periods that end before or on December 31, 2026.

3. Revenue can be determined based on the applicable accounting standards accepted in the UAE.

4. Small Business Relief will not be available to Qualifying Free Zone Persons or members of Multinational Enterprises Groups (MNE Groups) as defined in Cabinet Decision No. 44 of 2020 on Organising Reports Submitted by Multinational Companies. MNE Groups are groups of companies with operations in more than one country that have consolidated group revenues of more than Dh3.15 billion.

5. In tax periods defined in the decision where businesses do not elect to apply for Small Business Relief, they will be able to carry forward any incurred Tax Losses and any disallowed Net Interest Expenditure from such tax periods, for use in future tax periods in which the Small Business Relief is not elected.

6. With regard to the artificial separation of business, the Ministerial Decision specifies that where the Federal Tax Authority establishes that taxable persons have artificially separated their business or business activity and the total revenue of the entire business or business activity exceeds Dh3 million in any tax period and such persons have elected to apply for Small Business Relief, this would be considered an arrangement to obtain a Corporate Tax advantage under Clause (1) of Article 50 regarding the general anti-abuse rules of the Corporate Tax Law.

All Cabinet decisions and ministerial decisions issued relating to the Corporate Tax Law are available on the Ministry of Finance’s website

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