Al-Assad promogulates real estate sales tax law to increase revenues of State treasury 

Slums in the al-Mezzeh neighborhood in Damascus (Internet)

Slums in the al-Mezzeh neighborhood in Damascus (Internet)


The head of the Syrian regime, Bashar al-Assad, promulgated Law No. 15 of 2021 on 29 March, regulating real estate sales tax calculations, the state-run Syrian Arab news agency (SANA) reported.

The law, which will be effective on 3 May 2021, sets property sales tax rates based on the market value per square meter and under monetary value estimation and different criteria and factors for residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, and tourist properties.

The law is made up of 21 articles defining tax rates on real estate sales based on the real estate market’s circulating prices and monetary value estimation. 

Under the law, Syria’s Ministry of Finance will rely on property units’ market value while calculating real estate sales tax rates. The law gives power to the Minister of Finance, Kinan Yaghi, to form committees whose job is to estimate property units’ monetary value. 

These committees include:

  • A central committee headed by the Minister of Finance, Kinan Yaghi that consists of 10 members.

The central committee is responsible for supervising and certifying real estates’ monetary value estimated by each governorate’s main committees. The central committee shall appoint whomever it deems qualified to carry out its functions.

The committee’s meetings are not recognized as legal unless two-thirds of its members are present, including the committee’s chairperson or vice-chairperson. The meetings’ decisions are issued by the voting of the majority of present members. In the event of tied voting, the side of the committee’s chairperson or vice-chairperson is outweighed.  

  • Main committees chaired by directors of finance directorates of each governorate. These committees are responsible for supervising and approving sub-committees work and may appoint whomever they consider qualified to carry out their functions. Each main committee is composed of six members.
  • Sub-committees formed in provisional centers, cities, districts, and service directorates and headed by the chief of revenues department of provisional centers, a district finance director, or a department’s competent head. Each sub-committee includes six members.

The sub-committee chairperson assigns a financial worker from the data entry department to mark real estate boundaries on a specially designed program. The sub-committees estimate the price brackets and average monetary value circulating in the real estate market per square meter for each real estate unit according to specific criteria and upload them on a geographic information system (GIS), specially developed for marking property boundaries. These committees may hire whomever they deem appropriate to perform their works.

 The sub-committees meet at the invitation of their chairpersons at least once every six months, and whenever necessary, to re-evaluate the price brackets and average monetary value circulating in the real estate market per square meter for each property unit.

 The law defined the tax calculation imposed on real estate sales at the following rate:

  • 1% of tax is calculated for the market value of residential properties and lands located outside zoning plans.
  • 2% of tax is calculated for lands located within a certified zoning plan.
  • 3% of tax is calculated for sales of non-residential properties

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