With VAT coming into force in 2018, the Dubai Free Zones Council (DFZC) and the Federal Tax Authority hosted a workshop on VAT implementation.
The aim of the workshop was to help free zone entities with their tax obligations and offer a comprehensive overview of VAT, including the implementation timeline, products and services it will cover and the tax-exempt sectors. Additionally the workshop covered upcoming tax requirements, including bookkeeping, and invoice and financial documents preparation.
Dr Mohammed Alzarooni, Secretary General of the Dubai Free Zones Council, stressed that: "Companies must take timely and effective measures to adapt their operations, financial management and information systems to the new tax environment. The necessary changes are also set to impact professional capacities - accountants will need additional training, and the job market may even see a surge in tax adviser vacancies."
The 24 free zones in Dubai host over 30,000 companies with 330,000 employees. Meanwhile, the wider UAE is home to 40 free zones - the highest number in the region, representing about 25% of all free zones in Arab countries worldwide.