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UAE begins collecting ‘sin tax’ on tobacco, energy drinks and soft drinks

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A new tax dubbed the “sin tax” is being implemented in the United Arab Emirates on Sunday, with a fee being added to tobacco products and soft drinks.

Tobacco and energy drinks will be taxed at 100 percent and soft drinks at 50 percent.

The new tax push comes as the UAE and other oil-rich Gulf nations have struggled with low global energy prices. The UAE will start collecting a 5-percent value-added tax on certain goods in January.

All six members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, have agreed to begin collecting so-called VAT taxes, though others may begin later than January.

Saudi Arabia was the first GCC country to implement the “sin tax” earlier this year.

(With AP)