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Kuwait said to mull income tax on national companies
December 17, 2013, 9:02 am

Kuwait is reportedly mulling plans to impose income tax on “national firms” to help boost government revenue, it was reported on Monday.

The country's finance ministry is preparing a proposal, Finance Minister Sheikh Salem AbdulAziz Al-Sabah was quoted as saying in comments published by Bloomberg.

“The government may adopt proposals to extend the current corporate income tax to include Kuwaiti firms besides the foreign firms,” it said, citing an email from Sheikh Salem.

The report said the ministry is also coordinating with authorities in the Gulf Cooperation Council “for the development of the value added tax, which has seen good progress so far".

Sheikh Salem, who resigned as central bank governor in 2012. is likely to face opposition from a parliament that this year passed a law requiring the government to pay KD744m ($2.6 billion) to purchase citizens’ loans taken before March 30, 2008.

Sheikh Salem’s comments come just days after Kuwait was urged by the International Monetary Fund to control its public sector wage bill and state subsidies as part of a plan to safeguard against a drop in oil revenues in the future.

Last month, Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah also called on citizens of the oil-rich country to reduce their reliance on an “unsustainable” welfare state.

The government has since formed a committee to review subsidies on goods and services.

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