Oman American Business Center (OABC) in partnership with Ernst & Young (EY) held a seminar to discuss and provide insights on the importance of preparing businesses for the Value Added Tax (VAT) soon to be implemented in the Sultanate.
The seminar welcomed OABC members, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and business owners. The EY team shared their expertise, while advising the attendees on the challenges companies face to become VAT-compliant.
“Understanding the impact of the imminent VAT tax in Oman is extremely important to every single one of our 150 member companies, from the largest corporations to SMEs,” said Rebecca Olson OABC Executive Director.
As Oman moves towards implementing VAT, EY experts, led by David Stevens and Alkesh Joshi explained various ways and methods on how businesses can ensure they are VAT-ready. They shared a number of strategies regarding VAT implementations, including recommendations for managing VAT compliance, addressing tax costs and how to avoid some of the pitfalls faced by other businesses elsewhere in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). There was an in depth discussion on the role of technology and how managing tax data is likely to be the foremost challenge in a VAT implementation project.
“While VAT is referred as an extra cost to consumers, in a broader sense it will play a crucial role in developing and strengthening a country’s economy in the long-run. It takes time for businesses to be fully compliant and these seminars are a great start to help them understand how to proceed,” said Alkesh Joshi.
Already in effect in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, VAT is part of a GCC agreement made in 2016 to implement the tax across the region affecting both consumers and the business community. Whether impacting how businesses purchase their goods, to selling to consumers, the tax is a new regulation for many organisations to familiarise with and prepare for.