Kuwait has reportedly delayed the launch of VAT until 2021 at the earliest but will go ahead with the implementation of excise tax.
Kuwait parliament’s budget committee said in a statement posted on the assembly’s website that the introduction of VAT had been postponed.
“The committee said implementation of value-added tax in Kuwait will be postponed until 2021, and that the finance ministry saw the need to expedite measures for excise tax on select products such as tobacco, energy drinks and carbonated drinks,” the statement cited by Reuters said.
Gulf countries originally agreed to introduce VAT at a 5 percent rate at the start of this year, but only Saudi Arabia and the UAE did so.
The International Monetary Fund has estimated VAT in the UAE will eventually bring in 1.5 percent of gross domestic product.
According to a recent report from National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the country’s non-oil economy grew by 3.3 percent in 2017, up two percent from the previous year.
While the pace of growth tailed off slightly in the fourth quarter to 2.4 percent, overall the economy has continued to recover from its drastic slowdown in 2014 and 2015.
Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.