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A Complete Guide to Documents for Excise Tax Registration in UAE

Table of Contents

If your business manufactures, imports or sells excisable goods in UAE, you must register for excise tax with the Federal Tax Authority (FTA). But what documents do you need?
This comprehensive guide explains everything – from what excise tax means to a step-by-step registration process and FAQs. Read on to learn:

What is Excise Tax?

Excise tax refers to the indirect tax levied in the UAE on specific goods like:

  • Tobacco products – cigarettes, shisha tobacco, electronic smoking devices
  • Energy drinks – Red Bull, Power Horse, other high caffeine drinks
  • Carbonated drinks – Coca Cola, Pepsi, fizzy drinks
  • Sweetened beverages – non-carbonated sweet drinks and syrups

These goods are taxed at 50% or 100% of retail prices under the ‘sin tax’ designed to discourage consumption.
Any business that deals with these goods – whether manufacturing, importing, storing, transporting, distributing or selling – must register for excise tax.
This includes manufacturers, customs warehouses, distributors, wholesalers and retailers of excisable products.

Key Updates to Excise Tax in 2024

Some major changes effective from 2024 are:

  • More goods added to excise tax list – electronic smoking devices, sweetened beverages
  • Designated zones increased – Jebel Ali Free Zone included for storing goods tax-free pre-importation
  • E-invoicing mandated – digital invoices generated via FTA’s system

So wider range of businesses will need to register.

Documents Required from Business Owners

The key people running or investing in the business need to submit:

Passports

Clear, colored passport copies showing:

  • Photograph
  • Personal details
  • Issuing authority
  • Expiry date
  • UAE entry stamp

If passport renewed, include both current and previous.

UAE Residence Visas

Submit copies of valid UAE residence visa for:

  • Business owner
  • Managing director
  • Authorized signatories
  • Other shareholders/investors

Visa must clearly show:

  • Names
  • Photograph
  • Sponsor details
  • Issue and expiry dates

Emirates IDs

Provide scanned copies of both sides of Emirates ID cards for all owners, partners, shareholders and key management like:

  • Managing director
  • CEO
  • General manager

You need to provide documents that detail your trade activities involving excisable goods.

Trade License

Submit a copy of valid commercial license from Department of Economic Development (DED) showing:

  • License number
  • Business name
  • Owners/directors
  • Permitted business activities

Activities must allow trading in excisable goods like ‘Import and distribution of tobacco’.

Memorandum of Association

If an LLC or mainland company, provide company’s Memorandum of Association showing:

  • Shareholder names and distribution
  • Paid-up capital
  • Business activities note excisable goods

E.g. ‘Trading in tobacco products within UAE’.

Articles of Association

For free zone companies, submit Articles of Association indicating:

  • Registered address
  • Shareholders details
  • Directors
  • Authorized business activities

E.g. ‘Storage, transport, distribution of energy drinks’.

Commercial Register

For mainland companies, attach commercial register report from Department of Economic Development (DED) showing:

  • License details
  • Shareholder/director changes
  • Amendments to business activities

Should reflect excisable goods activities.

Customs Registration

If importing or exporting excisable goods, submit copies of:

  • Customs Registration Certificate from Dubai Customs
  • Import/Export Code

You’ll also need to provide inventory counts of raw materials, packaging, and finished excise goods.
Example:
Al Madina Tobacco Factory LLC should submit trade license showing activity ‘Manufacture of tobacco’, customs registration allowing tobacco imports, and inventory record of raw tobacco leaves, packaging like cigarette foils, and finished cigarettes.

Property and Inventory Documents

The following documents related to storage of excisable goods are required:

Title Deeds

If business premises owned, provide Land Department title deed showing:

  • Full address
  • Land boundaries
  • Ownership records

Tenancy Contracts

If renting, submit valid tenancy contract showing:

  • Names of landlord and tenant
  • Location, size and access details
  • Usage clause mentioning ‘Storage and sale of excisable goods’

Attach detailed floor plans mapping areas for storing or trading excise products.

Inventory Counts

Submit:

  • Records of raw materials
  • Packaging stocks
  • Finished goods counts

Conduct and document periodic physical inventory counts for accuracy.
Example:
Jumbo Beverages LLC should submit tenancy contract for warehouse allowed for beverage storage, floor plans showing racking for energy drink cans, and inventory records tracking raw materials like sugar syrup, packaging like aluminum cans, and finished canned drinks.

Step-by-Step Excise Tax Registration Process

Follow this checklist to ensure smooth registration:

  1. Gather Documents – Use this guide to compile all papers
  2. Visit FTA Website – Create account on www.tax.gov.ae
  3. Fill Form – Log in and complete online application form
  4. Upload Documents – Attach scanned copies of supporting papers
  5. Pay Fee – Pay registration fees of AED 10,000
  6. Get TRN – You’ll receive your Tax Registration Number in up to 20 days
  7. Use TRN – Quote the number on all tax invoices, returns and letters

Renewal and Deregistration Rules

  • Renew registration annually within 30 days of expiration by paying AED 5,000 fee
  • You can voluntarily deregister if business closes operations in UAE
  • FTA may deregister if you fail to renew registration, file returns or pay taxes

Conclusion

This sums up everything needed for hassle-free excise tax registration in UAE – documents required, process to follow, renewal and deregistration rules.
Equip yourself with right information and expert support to avoid pitfalls and hefty penalties. Contact specialists like Horizon Biz Consultancy for end-to-end guidance.

FAQs

What are the penalties for non registration?

Fines up to AED 50,000 plus seizure of goods and temporary imprisonment for willful tax evasion.

How long is excise tax registration valid?

All registrations need to be renewed each year.

Can I get excise tax registration for free zone company?

Yes, free zone companies trading excisable goods must also register.

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VIBHA MALIK MODI

Ms. Vibha Modi, CA, is supported by 13+ Years of Corporate Tax, International Taxation and Accounting Expertise.

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