KSA tax system ‘one of best in world’: Al-Assaf

Finance Minister Ibrahim Al-Assaf

Finance Minister Ibrahim Al-Assaf

Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world seriously committed to raising taxes under Islamic precepts, said Finance Minister Ibrahim Al-Assaf in Riyadh on Tuesday.

Opening a forum on tax and Zakat collection in the capital, Al-Assaf said that the Kingdom has also overhauled the way it collects taxes. “The tax system in the Kingdom is one of the best modern systems in the world. Our experience in Zakat collection is a more important issue because we collect Zakat on trade items,” he said.

“The forum hosted by the Kingdom provides an opportunity for other countries in the world to get a glimpse of the Saudi tax and Zakat collection system. The Kingdom is the only country in the world interested in collecting Zakat officially,” Al-Assaf added.

Al-Assaf said the discussions at the conference would be useful for those wanting to learn more about the Kingdom’s system. He said the government has recently overhauled its tax system, making it more transparent and aligned with best international practices.

“The Zakat system is also being subjected to total review,” he said, adding that the country is keen to cooperate with other countries in solving tax-related issues.

Mark Moody, the honorary president of the International Center for Tax and Investment, said participants at the forum would discuss taxation in Middle East and North African countries. He said that studies and findings of the center on effective tax systems are discussed in detail in 85 countries.

Speaking at a recent press briefing, Ibrahim Al-Mufleh, director general of the Department of Zakat and Income Tax, which organized the forum, said different tax systems around the world had created loopholes for people to evade paying their taxes.

 
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