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Government intensifies efforts to harmonise multiple taxation

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Tax

• Charts ways for youth empowerment through SMEs
The Federal Government has said plans are underway to integrate both federal and state taxes to avoid overlapping and create an enabling environment for businesses to meet their tax obligations.

This followed government’s resolve to tackle the challenges of multiple taxation. Besides, it is aimed at saving time and cost, especially for entrepreneurs and investors.

Senior Special Adviser to the President on Industry, Trade and Investment, Jumoke Oduwole disclosed this at the third policy dialogue series on entrepreneurship organised by FATE Foundation in Lagos noted that the clumsiness of multiple invoices sharing tax proceeds between the states and Federal Government was worrisome.

She disclosed that her office was already discussing with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) to consolidate some of the taxes at both the federal and state levels.

“We are a federation and the taxes are constitutionally delimited. There is a distinction between the charges, levies and the taxes,” she said.

The Lagos State Commissioner for Wealth Creation and Employment, Babatunde Durosinmi-Etti, who spoke on the challenges entrepreneurs go through with multiple-taxation, which impacts negatively on their businesses, said the state was working hard to tackle the problem.

He added that an initiative was being put in place to ensure that all state taxes are merged into one.

Speaking on: “Scaling Entrepreneurship: How State-Led Efforts Can Unlock the Youth Potential,” Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai said his administration had engaged youths in developmental skills to create an improved business environment for investors to succeed.

He noted that the state had streamlined its tax laws into a single pocket that allows small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) to thrive.

El-Rufai, who was represented by the Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Muhammed Abdullahi, said: “What we have tried to do in the state is to provide jobs in the sectors we think our people will key into. Kaduna has a large youth population with about 70 per cent within the age bracket of 35 years and they are information technology (IT) savvy.

“These are people that can easily create applications that can be useful in all the sectors. We have done a lot of investments so that we can train our youths to be leaders in the future.”

Oduwole advised Nigerians to move in the same direction with government’s Economic and Recovery Growth Plan (ERGP) as more work has to be done on youth entrepreneurship, social initiatives and jobs creation.

“We should be pulling in the same direction with the ERGP. We have a lot of jobs deficit and young people who have to use their productive capabilities. The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo is very concerned about collaboration,” she said.

The Executive Director of FATE Foundation, Adenike Adeyemi added that the theme was selected to scale entrepreneurship growth and development in the country so that young Nigerians can start and grow viable businesses of their own.



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