By Naomi Uzor
Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, MAN, has appealed to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) to bring more tax payers into the tax net as a means of increasing tax revenue, rather than increasing tax rates.
President of MAN, Engr. Mansur Ahmed, made the call yesterday while engaging the Executive Chairman of FIRS at an interactive forum in Lagos.
He said that widening the tax net will move up taxes and levies which are usually borne by the narrow tax compliant segments of the populace, especially the corporate entities, majority of whom are manufacturers whose internal system cannot permit avoidance or evasion of tax.
Ahmed said MAN appreciates what FIRS has been doing especially in the last three years, given the fact that revenue from taxes has significantly improved and fast becoming another credible source of the nation’s central government’s yearly budget funding, thereby minimizing the vagaries and volatility associated with oil prices at the international market.
He stated: “The association would like to assure you that we share the view of FIRS, which is part of the transformation initiatives of the present administration that seeks to create a more prosperous economy through diversification of the economy and government revenue away from oil dominated foreign earnings to a more predictable sources that have the potential to accelerate the country’s economic growth.
“We like to place on record and commend you for your kind support and understanding in respect of the Value Added Tax (VAT) exemptions on biscuit and raw materials for the manufacture of diapers. As you would expect, there are still a few areas that need to be reviewed especially on the issue of VAT on raw materials. My expectation therefore, Mr. Chairman, is that participants at this forum will come out better informed, we shall resolve our areas of differences and contentious issues and at the end of the day, our relationship will be strengthened.”
In his remark, Executive Chairman, FIRS, Mr. Babatunde Fowler, noted that there is need to patronize the local manufacturers in the country.
He however stressed that there is nothing like multiple taxation in the Nigeria system, adding that, a lot of people categorize any payment to government as a tax. “You only have multiple taxation when you pay the same tax to different tiers of government” he noted.
Fowler also noted that FIRS remitted N5.3trillion to the federal government in 2018.