From 4 January 2022, the West African state of the Ivory Coast (Côte d’Ivoire) has imposed VAT on the sale of e-services to local consumers by non-resident businesses.
Prior to January 2022, non-resident businesses providing digital services in Côte d’Ivoire did not have to charge VAT on their sales. However, to remove the unfair advantage this gives to non-resident companies over resident providers, the local tax authorities (Direction Générale Des Impôts) confirmed that VAT will be charged at 18% on these types of transactions.
This new tax will require foreign providers of electronic service to register with the Direction Générale Des Impôts through a new simplified registration process, and will apply to a range of electronic services including streaming games, music, apps, films, e-books, e-journals, software, and internet services.
On 1 January 2022, Kazakhstan extended its VAT system to include the sale of electronic services to consumers by non-resident businesses.
Previously, foreign businesses providing electronic services in Kazakhstan did not have to charge VAT on their sales. However, to remove the unfair advantage this gives to non-resident companies over Kazakh resident providers, the Kazakhstan government has implemented VAT at 20% on these types of transactions.
The Kazakhstan government also confirmed that there will be no VAT registration threshold for these types of supplies so affected businesses will need to register from the first sale they make.
The new tax will apply to a range of electronic services including streaming games, music, apps, films, e-books, e-journals and internet services.
Qatar has recently announced that it plans to finally introduce VAT at 5% during 2022 but has not provided an exact date. Kuwait has also confirmed it will follow Qatar by introducing VAT from 1 January 2023.
Qatar and Kuwait are part of the six-country Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which have all agreed to implement a harmonised VAT regime of 5%. The GCC countries consist of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.