MUSCAT: Amendments to the Oman Income Tax Law, key provisions of which have come into force this year, will generate an additional RO 100 million in revenues to the government in 2018, according to a well-known tax expert. Alkesh Joshi, Partner (Business Tax Advisory Services) at multinational professional services firm EY Oman, said the revenue spike will help offset reductions in customs duty and other non-oil earnings recorded in the 2018 State Budget unveiled here on Monday. The amended tax code, promulgated via Royal Decree 9 / 2017, effectively brings all of the estimated 120,000 companies registered with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry within the purview of Oman’s tax system. It raises the tax rate from 12 to 15 per cent while reducing the tax-free threshold from RO 30,000 to zero. Furthermore, the scope of withholding tax has been extended to cover seven categories of payments made by local companies to foreign companies.
Total revenues from taxes, customs duties and other fees are projected to dip to RO 1,413 million in 2018, marginally down from RO 1,423 million in 2017. A sizable drop in customs duty is primarily to blame, although the fall is substantially mitigated by an increase in corporate tax earnings, the Muscat-based tax professional noted.