Posted on January 23, 2020

Qatar’s efforts to broaden its revenue base by introducing extensive changes to the national tax framework will be explored in a forthcoming report by the global research and advisory firm Oxford Business Group (OBG).

Marking OBG’s 15th year of operations in the country, The Report: Qatar 2020 will shine a spotlight on the General Tax Authority (GTA), which is tasked with implementing all legislation governing tax and improving compliance, assessing its progress to date. The report will also examine how the introduction of anexcise tax on items such as tobacco, alcohol and energy drinks has affected importers, manufacturers and traders of these and other special purpose goods, one year on from its introduction. OBG will consider what other indirect taxes are likely to follow as the leadership moves forward with its plans to diversify the economy in line withVision 2030, such as the highly anticipated Value Added Tax.

Other topics set for analysis include the surprising decision by the Qatar Financial Centre just this month to ban cryptocurrency-related activities amidst concerns over the possible funding of terrorism and money-laundering. Grant Thornton Qatar has signed a first-time memorandum of understanding with OBG for its forthcoming publication. Under the agreement, the business advisory firm will help OBG to carry out the research for the Tax Chapter ofThe Report: Qatar 2020 and other content that will be made available across the Group’s platforms.

Jana Treeck, OBG’s Managing Director for the Middle East, said she was delighted to have Grant Thornton Qatar’s experts on board for OBG’s analysis, given the rapid tempo at which the country’s tax and regulatory framework was evolving.

“Making tax collection more efficient and effective is a key part ofQatar’s bid to ensure long-term growth is sustainable,” Treeck said. “Grant Thornton Qatar has an in-depth understanding of the changes taking place within the local taxation system and provides specialised services to a broad client base on navigating the latest tax legislation and regulations. I’m sure that its team’s input will strengthen our coverage of this important aspect of Qatar’s economic development and investment opportunities.”

Hassan Sultan al Dosari, Chairman and Managing Partner of Grant Thornton Qatar stated that they assisttheir clients to make compliance with tax relegations and contribute share to the cause. “To foster economic growth and development governments need sustainable sources of funding for social programs and public investments. A well-functioning tax system is the foundation stone of the people-state relationship, establishing powerful links based on accountability and responsibility,” he added.

The Report: Qatar 2020 will mark the culmination of more than 12 months of field research by a team of analysts from Oxford Business Group. It will be a vital guide to the many facets of the country, including its macroeconomics, infrastructure, banking and other sectoral developments. OBG’s publication will contain contributions from leading representatives across the public and private sectors, including Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani,the Emir of Qatar; Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, Prime Minister of Qatar; Ali bin Ahmed AlKuwari,the Minister of Commerce and Industry; and the Chairman of the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim Al Thani.

The report will be produced with Grant Thornton Qatar. It will be available online and in print.  

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