Starting January 1, water pipe tobacco (shisha) or electrically heated cigarettes cannot be sold in the UAE unless they bear the digital tax stamp (DTS), the Federal Tax Authority (FTA) has said.
These products cannot be sold, transported, stored or possessed without the tax stamp.
The DTS system helps the FTA “improve its ability to collect excise tax charged” on such products on being imported or manufactured locally. It also enables “stakeholders to analyse the supply chain to better control illicit tobacco products”.
In addition, the DTS system allows for the implementation of compliance standards.
The FTA explained that the DTS system “facilitates inspection and control at customs outlets and local markets”.
The digital stamps will be placed on the packages of tobacco products and registered in the FTA database. The DTS contains data that can be read with a special device to make sure all taxes due have been paid.
“When orders are made for these stamps, they are sent to factories to be placed individually. This will ensure each package is tracked to the port of entry of each country, with the supplier submitting the permit form and the fees for the digital stamps ... This will ensure all digital stamps are registered and tracked through a central database,” the FTA said.
As on March 1, 2020, importing water pipe tobacco products and electrically heated cigarettes that do not carry DTS are banned.
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