The Federal Government of Nigeria has said it would embark on aggressive tax collection to increase revenue from the non-oil sector.
This was disclosed by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday while speaking in Abuja at the opening session of the 21st annual tax conference of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria.
At the conference with the theme, ‘Unlocking the potential of taxation,’ President Buhari was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Finance, Mahmoud Dutse.
The new approach, according to him, was necessary to achieve the implementation of key reforms in the country’s tax system.
He said, “Our tax system must reflect the nature of our commercial activity levels. Oil is just above 10 per cent of our GDP but it represents a disproportionate share of our tax revenue.
“We will, therefore, develop a framework that mobilises revenue from the non-oil sector. Our tax system must be dynamic in order to respond to an ever- evolving commercial landscape and to increasing technology-driven business models.
“As part of our drive to increase non-oil revenue, we have set an aggressive target for increasing tax collection. This is a reflection of the fact that the current level of compliance is low and in some cases, the effective tax rate paid by those that are compliant is lower than expected.
“On the Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme, for instance, 5,122 applications were received, at the end of July 2018, when the Scheme had gone through a 12-month cycle and entered sunset.
“Out of these applications, 1,006 made full payment, 1,613 had outstanding payments to make and 2,503 fell under those who did not furnish adequate information on their tax status.
“Arising from these applications, N92.67bn tax liability was declared. N34.67bn had been paid out of declared liability. The outstanding liability of N56.81bn will be paid in instalments.
“In all, 16,906 assets were declared under VAIDS. Of these, 3,317 are immovable assets, 13,771 are moveable assets, while 205 represented intangible assets and Investments.”