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Monday, 8 October 2018

Is the FinMin trying to up the tax on fun?

** #7 EXCLUSIVE- Is the FinMin trying to up the tax on fun? Members of the Federation of Egyptian Industries’ (FEI) Cinema Industry Chamber met with the Finance Ministry last week to discuss proposed legislation that would raise taxes collected on entertainment venues including cinemas, theaters, and nightclubs, government sources told Enterprise yesterday. In addition to setting a minimum entry charge of EGP 20, the changes — to which chamber members object — would raise the duties on different venues as follows:

  • 15% on Arabic film tickets, up from 5% previously;
  • 30% on foreign film tickets, up from 20%;
  • 15% on theater tickets, up from 10%;
  • 15% on circus tickets, up from 5%;
  • 30% on ballet and opera tickets, up from 5%;
  • 40% on night club entrance fees, up from 10%.

Wedding venues could also be made to pay a fee of EGP 1 per person, while group trips such as safaris would be taxed at 25-50% of their value. Members of the chamber claimed the proposed increases would be bad for business and will be meeting this week to further discuss the issue.

Background: This proposal has been circulating since 2016 and has been kicked down the road multiple times. That having been said, the treasury has made it clear that boosting tax receipts will be a key component of its drive to ease pressure on the budget as fuel prices see higher outlays for the subsidy program.

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