Sales Tax continues to hamper Zain Iraq

By John Lee.

Zain Iraq has said that the exceptional socio-economic circumstances in Iraq have hampered the company’s financial performance, with revenues for the period reaching $804 million and EBITDA reaching $284 million.

Net income amounted to $29 million, with the EBITDA margin standing at 35.3 percent. Data-related revenues formed 9 percent of overall revenues for the first nine-months of 2016 and customers served totalled 11.8 million, a 3 percent increase Y-o-Y.

The continued civil instability in Iraq and implementation of a 20 percent sales tax on mobile services, as well as wide-ranging tax increases on other sectors in the country are affecting spending on mobile services, impacting Zain Iraq’s operational results and consequently the Group’s overall key financial metrics.

Zain Group CEO, Scott Gegenheimer (pictured) stated:

We are working closely with the Board of Directors and the management team of all our operations in dealing with the many challenges we face, which are impacting our financial performance on several fronts. These essentially relate to the ongoing civil instability and sales tax increases in Iraq; the intense price competition in Kuwait; the biometric registration requirement in Saudi Arabia; and the currency issues in both Sudan and Iraq.

“We are optimistic that these issues will gradually subside and are confident that the strategies we have in place to tackle them will be effective.

(Source: Zain)

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