On 15 October 2017, ITIC joined with the Iraq Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (IEITI) to organize a roundtable on taxation at the Oil Cultural Centre in Baghdad.
The meeting, co-chaired by Mr. Alaa Mohedain (Secretary General of IEITI) and Dr. Azez Jafar Hassan (ITIC Senior Advisor), included participation by Dr. Sabah Shibeeb (Advisor to the Ministry of Oil); representatives from PCLD, Economic Department, and Research Department; Ms. Najiha Abases (Director General of the General Commission for Taxes); Directors General of the National Oil Companies; IEITI members, and ITIC working group members.
The main points of discussion during the roundtable focused on:
- Resolving disputes related to reconciling the amount of tax withheld by the Ministry of Oil and transferring the funds to the Ministry of Finance/GCT for the period 2010-2017. It was noted that a committee is being formed by the Prime Minister’s office to resolve this issue, and a report is expected in the near future.
- Expediting the settlement of IOCs and SOCs tax assessments according to Law 19 (2010) and Law 113 (1982), including how to determine the amount of tax the companies owe or the amount to refunded by the Government based on the amounts withheld. These are the main issues delaying the issuance of the final tax assessments.
It was also suggested that streamlining and promoting the large taxpayer section would help establish a central place for large taxpayers to address their disputes; however, this would require support by the GCT.
It was agreed that committee formed by the Prime Minister’s office will help resolve disputes and accelerate the issuance of the final tax assessments. Once the Committee’s report is issued, the GCT should then settle the assessments of the IOCs and OSCs according to the Iraqi tax laws.
Participants from the IOCs also pledged to keep IEITI informed about any other matters related to tax deductions.
ITIC thanks IEITI for their support in organizing this meeting. We also thank Dr. Azez for his continued leadership on behalf of ITIC and our Iraq Working Groups.