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Nigeria govt goes after tax evaders with improved enforcement mechanisms

Some of the participants in a group photograph.

‘We call upon all stakeholders to embrace these reforms, fulfill their tax obligations, and work hand in hand with the government in achieving our common goal of building a strong and resilient economy’

By Valentine Amanze

Nigerian government is set to boost its revenue by going after tax evaders through improved tax enforcement schemes.

The Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Zacch Adedeji, disclosed this at the Commerce and Industry Correspondents Association of Nigeria’s (CICAN) annual workshop and awards held in Lagos on Tuesday November 21, 2023.

At the event titled, “Effects of the federal government’s tax reforms on the economy,’’ Adedeji explained that the move was coming on the heels of the pronouncement of the federal government’s desire to raise tax of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio to 18 per cent in the next three years without imposing additional taxes.

He said that the measure would be achieved through the use of tax laws to boost compliance.

Adedeji, who was represented by the Director and Coordinator, Lagos Island FIRS, Mrs. Oyeniyi Fadekemi, stated that the success of the reforms would rely not only on the government but also on the active participation and cooperation of the business community.

Also read: CICAN decries hike in fuel price, laments effects on economy

His words: “We call upon all stakeholders to embrace these reforms, fulfill their tax obligations, and work hand in hand with the government in achieving our common goal of building a strong and resilient economy.”

Adedeji also reaffirmed the service’s commitment to creating a level playing field for all taxpayers and recognizing the importance of combating tax evasion and ensuring that everyone pays taxes.

He pointed out that taxation was the lifeblood of any economy, as it provided the necessary funding for government to carry out its functions and implement policies that foster growth and development.

Adedeji also said that it was

imperative that Nigeria’s tax policy reforms were effective, fair, and encourage investment and innovation.

“Over the years, Nigeria has recognized the need for tax policy reforms to address the challenges faced by businesses and create an enabling environment for economic growth.

“It is instructive to note that part of the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is to reform the tax system. On assumption of office, he set up a Presidential Committee on Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms headed by Mr Taiwo Oyedele with other eminent Nigerians representing various institutions and professional bodies with the mandate to reform the tax ecosystem.

“This reform is expected to lead to fiscal discipline, remove all impediments in our tax system, and eliminate the ambiguity in our tax laws that will culminate in the ease of doing business which will ultimately lead to improved revenue generated from taxes,” he said.

He commended the Commerce and Industry Correspondents Association of Nigeria (CICAN) for organizing the conference and providing a platform to discuss such critical issues.

“Together, let us strive for a vibrant and prosperous Nigeria, where

businesses thrive, and our citizens can fulfill their potential,” Adedeji said.

valoa2000@yahoo.com

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