Don’t increase taxes, MAN tells FIRS

The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), has appealed to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), not to increase taxes, but to bring more tax payers into the tax net as a means of increasing tax revenue.

The President of MAN, Engr. Mansur Ahmed, made the appeal in Lagos on Thursday, while engaging the Executive Chairman of FIRS at an interactive forum.

According to Ahmed, 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 also expressed MAN’s appreciation for what FIRS has been doing especially in the last three years, adding that revenue from taxes has significantly improved and fast becoming another credible source of the nation’s central government’s yearly budget funding.

It said that this has started minimizing the vagaries and volatility associated with oil prices at the international market.

Ahmed 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.”

While responding, the Executive Chairman, FIRS, Mr. Babatunde Fowler, said there is need to patronize the local manufacturers in the country.

He however denied the presence of 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.

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