Don’t try to pass the buck on VAT responsibility

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Like it or not, value added tax will make its UAE arrival in a matter of months, and complying with its requirements is not even a matter of choice for companies based here. Therefore at every level departments must examine their role come January, David Daly writes.

Your coffee-quaffing accountants who collaborate on VAT articles for these pages have primarily focused on the processes required to comply with the tax’s expected reporting requirements – without addressing ownership of the same. Today as we sit around the boardroom table, I want to aid businesses in a discussion that should really have already taken place.

If it hasn’t, you are in luck. Ramadan and summer are upon us. These both bring a downturn in commercial activity with shortened working hours and individuals taking holidays in cooler climes.

This task cannot be ignored. VAT deniers are today’s flat earthers. If it wasn’t for the heat you’d easily identify them by their tin foil hats.

What executive does not want to lead the charge in a material change to their business? As long as it’s their original concept or interpretation of sector bleeding edge innovation, no lacking will be found in enthusiasm. But any potential harbinger of failure is invariably celibate.

Who should own the VAT process in a business? The CEO must frame and lead discussions so it can be assessed and addressed. A useful route would be to trace a trading sale end to end and weigh up who is closest to the various VAT events.

It is the marketing director’s role to shake the bushes in search of customers. In support of this monies are spent to coax sales through conferences, entertainment and other mediums. The first of these can typically…

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