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New VAT Guidelines: VAT Treatment on Financial Services

UAE implementation VAT raised a lot of questions in the mind of the business community and the companies. However, what would be the treatment of VAT on Financial Services? remained a big question.

Under the new VAT Guideline, let us review the treatment of VAT on different financial services.


 Below mentioned are the financial service that is exempted from VAT.

  • Financing (e.g., interest spread)
  •  Security trade profits including share and trades
  •  Forex spreads
  •  Financial derivative margins
  •  Life Insurance or Family Takaful

Standard Rated (5%)

On the following items, VAT is applied:

  • Arrangement Fees
  • Brokerage Fees
  • Custodian fees
  • Investment management fees
  • General insurance or General Takaful

Zero-rated (0%)

 Items with Zero-rated VAT are:

  • Trade financing for exports including LC
  • Financing outside GCC including property that is located outside GCC



Out of scope (Nil)

  • Financing (Principal Amount)
  • Dividends
  • Buying or selling of underlying assets for the sake of Islamic transaction as well as penalty charges including the early settlement fees



Impact of VAT on financial services

Different financial services including that of the Islamic finance products are totally exempted from VAT. Considerations received for the sake of bank services will be subject to the VAT rate of 5%. The margin-based services will be exempt from VAT but those of the fee-based services will be taxable. No fixed recovery rate will be adopted.

It is being aimed to achieve the neutrality between both the Islamic as well as the conventional products in order to treat both the product types equally.

Pay Zero or No VAT on these types of Goods and Services in UAE

Domestic Taxable Supplies

A business registered under VAT in UAE is charged 5% VAT on all the local goods and supplies in UAE.

The VAT that is collected from the customers is called output tax. One thing that must be made sure regrading output tax is that is should get reported in the VAT return. The taxable rate, in this case, would be 5%.

Reverse charge

There are certain notified supplies on which the VAT registered businesses need to pay VAT.  On Imports of goods and supplies from other countries, the standard rate of VAT will be applied. Such businesses who import goods and supplies from other countries can claim the VAT back as input tax or not claiming any extra tax. This is the reason why these supplies are called reverse charge supplies because they can be claimed back again as input tax for avoiding any extra tax.

If someone imports any sort of accessories in Dubai, like imports any spare parts from any other country, then 5% VAT will be applied to the registered importer. Such an importer can claim input tax so that there is no extra tax payable on the transaction.

The Difference Between Zero-Rated VAT and Exempted VAT

Zero-rated supplies

The VAT can be charged at zero rates on the supply of different goods and services including export goods and services. 0% VAT is implemented on such supplies.

If a dealer in Dubai exports goods and supplies in some other county, 0% VAT will be applied.

Exempted supplies

There are different goods and services including that of the financial, residential or other transportation services which are exempted under VAT in UAE. There is no VAT implemented on such services.

If a person who deals with the local passenger services, he will not come under VAT in UAE as local passenger services are exempted from VAT. Education and healthcare services are also exempted from VAT.

Intra-GCC Supplies – B2B

If the recipients are registered in any of the GCC implementing states, the supplier registered under VAT will not be required to charge such people with VAT in UAE. No VAT is implemented in such a case.

If a person in Dubai supplies spare parts in any other country like that of Saudi Arabia, the supplier will not be allowed to charge VAT ON Saudi customer.

  • If a supplier who is registered under VAT supplies any goods to someone who is not registered in the implementing state, 5% VAT will be applicable.
  • If a registered supplier supplies goods to a person in the non-registered implementing state but the value of the exports exceeds the mandatory vat registration in UAE threshold, no VAT will be applicable.

Vat Services in Dubai

There is so much about VAT and particularly VAT on financial services that one must need to know. You can get the best knowledge about VAT and its implementation on certain goods and supplies vat consultancy by Farahat and Co. They present to you the finest VAT services you might not have any idea about. If you do not have a hold on VAT in UAE, FAR is here to help you in the best manner. They will evaluate everything for you without burdening you in one way or the other. This is not all. They help you make your business better every passing day so you do not get troubled by the changing rules and regulations. So, do not get feared if you face any issue regarding VAT. Contact us and take any information you need regarding VAT.

Ervee is a CPA with international experience in Tax and Accounting. He has over 12 years of experience in accounting and bookkeeping and over a year in VAT implementation, registration, and accounting in UAE. He regularly drives out inefficiencies in company operations and loves the challenge of helping clients find additional ways for an easier and improved compliance and verification of transactions. Read more