Bahrain: The National Bureau of Revenue (NBR) extends record retention period to 10 years

In brief

On 28 February 2024, the NBR notified taxpayers via email and an announcement on its webpage that the record retention requirement for Value-Added Tax has been extended from five to ten years. The initial five-year record retention period for the 1 January 2019 – 31 March 2019 (Q1 2019) would have lapsed as of 31 March 2024, but now has been extended to 21 March 2029.


The following documents are required to be retained by taxpayers, where applicable:

  1. Accounting books related to the Taxable Person's work (all of the transactions according to their chronological and numerical order).
  2. Balance sheet and profit and loss account.
  3. Records of salaries and wages.
  4. Records of fixed assets.
  5. Inventory records and accounts (including quantities and values) at the end of any relevant Tax Period.
  6. A copy of Tax Invoices, credit and debit notes issued, and original Tax Invoices received by the Taxable Person.
  7. All customs documents relating to import and export transactions carried out by the Taxable Person.
  8. Additional records determined by the NBR.

It will be important for taxpayers to update their internal data and documentation policies and procedures to allow for the extended recorded retention period. The extension of the record retention period may signal a potential extension of the statute of limitation period, increasing the Tax Authority's opportunity to undertake investigations and audits of the taxpayer's historical tax submissions. As of now, we have not heard any mention of any change to the set statutory limitation period of five years.

To speak with us in relation to any tax matters or issues more generally, please contact one of the team members.

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