Expo 2020 Official Participants are eligible for VAT Refund Scheme

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UAE – August 11, 2021:

Did you know exhibitors in Expo 2020 are entitled to request for a refund on the VAT expenses incurred on the goods and services related to the exhibition?

FTA introduced a VAT Refund Scheme for Expo 2020 official participants to claim VAT refund incurred on expenses. Expo 2020 is a registered exhibition scheduled to take place in Dubai from 20 October 2020 to 10 April 2021. The official participants include countries and organizations that have received and accepted the official invitation from the UAE to participate in Expo 2020 as an exhibitor.

Cabinet Decision no. 1 of 2020 on the Refund of VAT Paid on Goods and Services for Official Participants in Expo 2020 Dubai replaces the Cabinet Decision no. 1 of 2019, which was issued earlier by the FTA. View the latest guide.

The guide provides guidance for official participants of Expo 2020 on the following:

  • The conditions which must be met to be entitled to claim the VAT refund.
  • The process to be followed to claim VAT.
  • Information required to complete the relevant forms.
  • Additional details on the registration requirements along with the importing and customs details are also covered in this guide.

These are 5 categories in which vat can be claimable are:

  • VAT incurred by the Official Participant on Goods and Services in direct connection with the construction, installation, alteration, decoration and dismantlement of their exhibition space.
  • VAT incurred by the Official Participant on Goods and Services in direct connection with the works and activities of organizing and operating the Official Participant’s exhibition space and any presentations and events within the Expo 2020 site.
  • VAT incurred by the Official Participant on Goods and Services relating to the actual operations of the Official Participant, provided that the value of each Good or Service for which the Office of the Official Participant makes a claim is not less than AED 200.
  • VAT incurred by the Official Participant in connection with all operations, services and activities provided for the purpose of participation in Expo 2020 Dubai, whether located within or outside the boundaries of the Expo 2020 Dubai site.
  • VAT incurred on import of Goods for personal use of the Official Participant’s Section Commissioner-General, Section Staff and the Beneficiaries

A few simple steps need to be followed for the refund:

  • Log into the FTA account.
  • Apply for refund as per the process available in the VAT refund user guide.
  • The FTA will review and approve the request within 20 working days.

Contact FTA’s Service Channels:

For registrants in the FTA system:

For non-registrants in the FTA system:
Email :

To know more about the procedure of the service click here.

Contact our tax consultants:

Our tax experts can offer you consultancy services in connection with your activities related to Expo 2020. The list includes registration with FTA, eligibility of input tax recovery, VAT returns, submission of VAT refund application and timely completion of respective documentation.