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Fri 26 Jul 2019 12:23 AM

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UAE's FTA reaffirms Aug 1 deadline for illegal cigarette sales

Federal Tax Authority says owning or selling cigarettes not bearing the Red Digital Tax Stamps will be prohibited as of August 1

UAE's FTA reaffirms Aug 1 deadline for illegal cigarette sales

The UAE's Federal Tax Authority (FTA) has re-affirmed that owning or selling cigarettes not bearing the Red Digital Tax Stamps will be prohibited across local markets as of August 1.

The timeline is part of the Marking Tobacco and Tobacco Products Scheme, which seeks to electronically track cigarettes packs from the production facility until they reach the end-consumer to protect consumers from low-quality products and combat tax evasion.

In a statement, the authority called on all cigarette producers, importers, dealers, and consumers in the UAE to comply with the decision in order to avoid penalties.

The objective, the FTA said, is to curb attempts at commercial fraud and protect consumers from sub-standard products that harm their health and the environment.

The Federal Tax Authority said that two types of Digital Tax Stamps have been approved, the first of which is Red and meant to be placed on the packaging of tobacco products sold at all local markets, as well as at duty-free in arrival lounges.

The second type is Green and earmarked for tobacco products sold at duty-free in departure lounges.

FTA director general, Khalid Ali Al Bustani, called on all businesses involved in the manufacture and supply of tobacco and tobacco products, who are all subject to excise tax, to comply with the timetable.

He also called on consumers to report any violations in the market by emailing tax_consumers@tax.gov.ae.

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