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It's been reported by NAN that the Federal Government has taken notice of appeals by the organised private sector (OPS) to harmonise various governments tax and levies operational nationwide.
In this report, PM News has it that the Cordinating Minister and Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, disclosed this at the Annual Tax Conference (ATC) organised by the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) in Abuja.
Okonjo-Iweala who was represented by the Minister of State for Finance, Bashir Yugudu, stated the harmonisation of the tax and levies was to curb illegal taxation and levies encountered in the real sector of the economy.
Okonjo-Iwuela went on to say that the harmonisation was approved at Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on May 13.
She said President Jonathan has been unhappy with the high level of double taxation and decay in the nation’s operational tax system.
Using the communication sector to illustrate the need for tax and levies harmonisation, she said that network providers, after obtaining licence for the right of way from the Federal Government, were billed by states and local government.
Contrary to other opinions, the harmonisation would lead to accurate tax and levies assessments and engender voluntary compliance in tax laws without harassment or intimidation, she opined.
“We all know that SMEs are growth engine room for this country; the sector contributed over 41 per cent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
“We approved a fair assessment of tax for the sector; the process of improving on Internal Generated Revenue (IGR) has to be friendly.
“Now we are targeting more non-oil sectors to increase tax revenue; even the recent GDP figures depicted that highest revenue cropped up under non oil sectors,” she said.
A committee, inaugurated in 2012 and headed by the minister of finance, was charged with the harmonisation responsibility.