Economic substance reporting deadline extended to 31st January 2021

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The Ministry of Finance (MoF) has extended the deadline for all UAE based companies to file their Economic Substance Regulation (ESR) Notifications and (if necessary) ESR Reports to 31st January 2021.

All companies in the UAE that engage in a “relevant activity” must submit an annual ESR notification and , if applicable, an ESR Report to both the regulatory authority in which the company is registered AND to the MoF itself by using the online portal.

No further extension will be given to according to the announcement. MoF began receiving ESR notifications and reports through their portal from 1st December 2020, leaving very little time for companies to comply.

The extension will be a huge relief to many companies, especially as the quick turn-around time was coupled with technical difficulties from the portal itself; there have been long periods of time over the last few weeks in which it was inaccessible.

Younis Haji Al Khoori, Undersecretary of MoF, noted that the extension came within MoF’s endeavour to support the business sectors and companies affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Al Khoori said:

“The Ministry of Finance has exceptionally extended the deadline for companies to submit their notifications and reports for the fiscal year 2019 until the end of January 2021. The extension is part of MoF’s endeavour to simplify procedures and enable business sectors to meet the requirements in a timely manner, in order to avoid any delay penalties.”

ESR was introduced in UAE in 2019 as part of measures designed to remove UAE from the European Union blacklist of countries deemed to be tax havens.

The information that will be collected through the portal will help the Federal Tax Authority determine whether the companies are carrying out “sufficient and appropriate ESR activities in the UAE.”

If you have any questions on ESR or would like Alpha Management to help with your company’s filing, please contact us.