BAB names special committee on VAT

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The Bahrain Association of Banks has launched a committee on value added tax, comprising 35 members representing 24 banks and Bahraini financial institutions, in preparation for implementing the value added tax in the kingdom next year.

The committee will work under the supervision of BAB to bring together representatives from all banks in Bahrain with an aim to discuss the Bahrain VAT regulation, assess its impact on financial services sector (specifically banking), share experiences and challenges faced in its implementation, work together as one banking community to help each other progress through this key transition period and act as a single voice for its interactions and dealings with the local regulators on the subject, a statement said.

The first meeting was held at HSBC Bank’s head office in Seef, chaired by its chief financial officer Nasir Maqsood.  More than 30 representatives from local banks attended the meeting.

Mohamed El-Swefy, HSBC Menat head of tax, provided support and guidance to the group by sharing HSBC’s experiences and challenges faced during its recent VAT implementation in UAE and Saudi Arabia.

Going forward the group expects to meet regularly and share experiences through pre- and post-implementation and, as one group, work with the local regulators in understanding and refining the Bahrain VAT legislation for the local banking sector, the statement said.

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