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Lawmakers reject proposal to tax expats

Bahrain Lawmakers have rejected two attempts to make expats pay taxes for owning cars and for sending money home.

A draft law submitted by MPs requested that every expat who owned a car should pay BD40 towards annual registration fees, making it twice the amount of what Bahrainis pay.  There was also a proposal to tax expats on the remittances they make to their home countries.

According to Lawmakers, expats sending money home should be made to pay remittance fee for the state. However, the proposal was rejected owing to fears that it would emerge the growth of a parallel financial market that would damage the reputation of Bahrain, which currently is a good financial hub.

Manama’s Foreign Affairs Committee has already rejected the proposal claiming it as unconstitutional. With just 16 lawmakers out of the 40 being present in the parliament for the vote, they were unable to convince their peers about the concept of generating additional revenues for the state.

More than half of the population in Bahrain are expats. The 2016 figures in Bahrain show that Bahrain was home to 665,000 nationals and 760,000 expatriate workers. The total population in Bahrain is likely to touch 1.7 million in 2022.

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