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April 4, 2024

Saudi Arabia issues new Executive Regulations for Zakat Collection

  • Saudi Arabia has issued the new Executive Regulations for Zakat Collection (Bylaws).
  • The objective of the Bylaws is to provide more clarity on the existing zakat regulations regarding taxpayers' rights and zakat calculation methods.
  • The Bylaws also aim to combine all the zakat collection rules applicable to various sectors under one set of regulations.
  • Zakat payers should review the impact of the Bylaws and apply the provisions accordingly, including potential application to fiscal years that began before 1 January 2024.

Executive summary

On 21 March 2024, Saudi Arabia's Minister of Finance approved the new Executive Regulations for Zakat Collection (Bylaws) under Ministerial Resolution No. 1007.

The Bylaws, published by the Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority (ZATCA) on 22 March 2024, aim to clarify the zakat regulations and compliance requirements, particularly on zakat calculation methods. They also aim to consolidate all other zakat regulations previously issued for specific sectors, such as financing, insurance and investment funds.

The Bylaws apply to fiscal years starting on or after 1 January 2024. However, they can also be applied to fiscal years that began before 1 January 2024, provided that a zakat payer submits an application within 60 days from the date of publishing the Bylaws. For fiscal years in which a tax audit has not begun, the 60-day window starts from the date of receiving a tax audit notice.

In addition, the ZATCA published the "Guidelines for major amendments and treatments that came in the Zakat collection bylaws issued 1445H."

Detailed discussion


On 17 September 2023, the ZATCA released a set of proposed Zakat Bylaws (Draft Bylaws) for public consultation. See EY Global Tax Alert, Saudi Arabia releases new draft Zakat Bylaws for public consultation, dated 28 September 2023.

Following the public consultation and collecting views on the draft regulations from various stakeholders, the new Bylaws have now been released.

Highlights of the new zakat Bylaws*

  • The Bylaws clarify key zakat concepts such as zakat residency, trading investments and development properties.
  • The Bylaws introduce certain changes in the computation of the zakat base, including:
    • The zakat base calculation will align with a company's financial statements' closing balances for additions and deductions.
    • Net adjustments to profit/loss will be calculated separately and added to/deducted from the zakat base.
    • Noncurrent payables and equivalents will be considered as financing noncurrent assets, irrespective of which one comes first.
    • The zakat base will include ending balances of payables and equivalents, equity elements and provisions.
    • The rules for classifying shareholder loans as debt or equity for zakat purposes will be stricter.
    • Provisions will be treated differently for zakat purposes (e.g., employee benefits and vacation provisions are considered long-term debts).
    • The calculation of the zakat base includes adding amounts of current liabilities against deductible current assets to the zakat base.
    • The calculation deducts amounts of noncurrent liabilities against nondeductible noncurrent assets.
    • If the value of the current liabilities is higher than that of the current assets, the difference is added to the zakat base.
    • Provision charges will be recognized as allowable business expenses.
    • Taxes and zakat paid to the Government will be considered as allowable expenses.
    • New zakat-deductible items, including raw materials, statutory deposits and treasury bills in employee savings plans, are introduced under specific conditions.
    • Government receivables may be deducted from the zakat base under certain circumstances.
    • Updated minimum and maximum limits for the zakat base are established.
  • Alternative methods for calculating zakat on foreign investments and funds are provided.
  • Zakat assessment will be based on shareholders and their shareholding percentages at the end of the fiscal year, regardless of ownership changes during the year.

    * Please note that certain provisions within these Bylaws may require further clarification. Guidance on practical application may be necessary in some instances.


Zakat payers should assess the implications of the new regulations and consider whether it would be beneficial for them to opt to apply the new regulations to prior years, i.e., fiscal years that began prior to 1 January 2024.

* * * * * * * * * *
Contact Information

For additional information concerning this Alert, please contact:

Ernst & Young Professional Services (Professional LLC), Riyadh

Ernst & Young Professional Services (Professional LLC), Jeddah

Ernst & Young Professional Services (Professional LLC), Al Khobar

Ernst & Young — Middle East, Bahrain

Ernst & Young LLP (United States), Middle East Tax Desk, New York

Published by NTD’s Tax Technical Knowledge Services group; Carolyn Wright, legal editor

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