Author granted license

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date





This paper develops, extends, and clarifies themes introduced in five prior papers dealing with blockchain, and VATCoin in the context of both (a) the new VATs in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), and (b) the mature VATs in the EU. Five additional papers on VAT technology advances in Fiji, with blockchain and VATCoin applications to New Zealand’s approach to online sales platforms (the Netlix Tax) are similarly referenced and extended. The GCC VAT papers were exploratory. For the most part, they were composed before any GCC jurisdiction had implemented a VAT, and in three instances even before the GCC Framework Agreementwas officially published. Today, VATs have been adopted in three of the six GCC jurisdictions: Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain. A fourth jurisdiction, Oman, had been only a few months away from implementation, but now is delayed. As to the EU, the prior papers directly responded to the request for public comment on the Commission’s October 4, 2017 proposal for “far reaching reforms” in the EU VAT.All cutting-edge VAT compliance regimes depend on a comprehensive, naturally occurring or mandated digital invoice regime. Whether the goal is to blockchain •an entire VAT ecosystem (as in Fiji), or •a discrete market segment like taxi cabs (in Quebec), or •the marijuana supply chain (as is proposed for US States), or •the remote sales of services through online marketplaces (as is proposed for New Zealand’s Netflix Tax), or •cigarettes that are susceptible to smuggling (as was proposed, and partially adopted in parts of the GCC), or •whether the goal is to monitor the tax and financial flows on the other side of a transaction, •the domestic and cross-border payments of VAT (as has been proposed with VATCoin in both the GCC and the EU), everything starts with the adoption of the digital invoice. This paper will focus on two representative VAT jurisdictions within different economic communities –the United Kingdom (UK) in the EU and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in the GCC. Both are moving toward the adoption of comprehensive digital invoices. Neither have mandated it (yet). It is certainly not anaturally occurring phenomenon in either country.

Find on SSRN



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.