Decision to impose a 100 % tax on shisha has ignited criticism in Saudi Arabia



A decision to impose a 100 percent tax on bills at restaurants that serve shisha has ignited criticism on social media in Saudi Arabia, where the water pipes are a popular pastime. The furor has also been fuelled by confusion over how the tax is applied. In the meantime, some restaurants have stopped offering shisha, while others have lowered their prices to appease customers. The government’s official gazette said earlier this month that the tax will apply to all tobacco products.In the face of persistent budget deficits, the world’s top crude oil exporter has resorted to measures like cutting subsidies on fuel and power and imposing new taxes including on cigarettes and soft drinks.