Travelling to UAE? New VAT cash refund limit announced

The daily maximum limit for cash refunds of value-added tax (VAT) in UAE has been set at Dh7,000, it was announced on Sunday.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, UAE Minister of Finance and Chairman of the Federal Tax Authority (FTA), issued FTA Decision No. (1) of 2019, setting a daily maximum of Dh7,000 for VAT cash refunds for tourists applying through the Tax Refunds for Tourists Scheme.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the FTA asserted that the Tax Refunds for Tourists Scheme, which entered into effect in November 2018, is characterized by its efficiency, seamless procedures, speed, and accuracy in processing applications.

"The new decision regarding the maximum daily amount a tourist can reclaim in cash is in line with the UAE's overall strategy to reduce reliance on cash in financial transactions and benefit from the country's advanced digital and technological infrastructure. These systems are key components in driving the continuous development of the UAE's financial and economic sectors; they facilitate the flow of money and financial assets securely, increasing trust in financial transactions - both local and international," FTA Director-General Khalid Ali Al Bustani said.

"The Federal Tax Authority is committed to implementing the highest international standards across all its activities and services, in line with the directives of the UAE's wise leadership to make the UAE one of the best countries in the world by 2021," H.E. added. "We are committed to maintaining the UAE's competitiveness as the only Arab economy that is based on innovation and creativity. The new decision abides by best practices implemented in advanced economies, which prioritize effective and holistic risk management and promote e-payment solutions," he added.