UAE Excise Duty Effect: 53% drop in tobacco trade

By Angel Chan

ABU DHABI 24 February 2018: The trade of tobacco and related products in Abu Dhabi has declined by 53.4 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared with the same period in 2016, announced the Statistics Centre – Abu Dhabi, SCAD.

The Centre, which monitors trade in the emirate, did not record any re-export activity for this category of goods in December last year.

The major decrease in the emirate’s trade of tobacco and related products was recorded after the adoption of excise tax last October, as well as a 100 percent increase on tobacco products prices, and other products that harm general health, averaging between 50 and 100 percent, which include soft drinks and energy drinks

The centre showed that the emirate’s level of product trade between October and the end of December reached Dh94 million, compared to Dh202 million in 2016.

The value of re-exports during the last three months of the previous year totalled Dh93 million, or 99 percent of the total trade of tobacco and related products. The remaining amount did not exceed Dh1 million for imports while no amounts were recorded for related exports.

According to SCAD, Abu Dhabi’s level of exports and imports of raw tobacco and related products last October and November reached zero while trading activity was limited to re-exports, which also decreased by over half compared to 2016.