Executive Regulations for Amended Income Tax Law published

Executive Regulations (ER) clarifying certain provisions of the Income Tax Law (ITL) have been published in the official gazette, according to EY Oman, the local branch of well-known global professional services firm EY. The regulations were published by the Ministry of Financial Affairs through Ministerial Decision (MD) 14/2019, the tax and audit firm said at a seminar held at the Grand Hyatt Muscat on Tuesday.
The amendments include changes on withholding tax (WHT), deductibility of expenses, tax exemption, administrative procedures, and tax ability of an enterprise.
The Executive Regulations clarify certain provisions on WHT by providing the definition of the term services, interest and dividend. They also cover changes in deductibility of certain expenses such as increase in deductible limits of partner’s remunerations and criteria for deduction of donations in kind.
Further, there were also amendments on provisions relating to conditions and procedures for claiming tax exemption. The ER also prescribed new forms for providing/updating taxpayer information and laid out procedures for obtaining a tax card, electronic filing and onsite inspection. The ER also elaborated criteria for tax ability of an enterprise.  The amendments generally apply from February 11, 2019, although some amendments apply retroactively to tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2018. Taxpayers should familiarize themselves with the amendments, and their implications when filing tax returns, said EY.
Alkesh Joshi, Tax Partner at EY Oman, stated: “The recently introduced Executive Regulations have been the most awaited tax development for a while. The clarification provided by the Executive Regulations particularly in the application of withholding taxes on services and interest will now provide more certainty to the tax payers.”
EY also highlighted the significance of Vision 2040 for the Sultanate’s long-term development.
Oman’s Vision 2040 sets out the foundation and strategies of the Sultanate to become a productive and diversified economy founded on knowledge innovation, private sector driven and a globally competitive economy.
Ahmed al Esry, Market Segment Leader for EY in Oman, stated: “The budget 2019 and the recently announced Vision 2040 indicate that the Government of Oman is moving forward with caution and optimism by setting specific target to be achieved by 2040. The efforts will allow the economy to gradually diversify and get more contribution from the non-oil sectors.”