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Reps moves to pass Youth Entrepreneurship Fund bill

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Youth entrepreneurs in Nigeria may witness better days as the House of Representatives has moved to provide them opportunities for financial succour as the bill to bring about that has advanced to second reading on the floor of the green chamber

The bill is entitled : ‘Youth Entrepreneurship Development Trust Fund (Establishment) Bill, 2021(HB. 1448) sponsored by Mr Farah Dagogo, Member representing Degema/ Bonny Federal Constituency, Rivers State.

In his lead debate, Dagogo noted that the proposed law will create a fund which shall be used to provide financial support to Nigerian youths with entrepreneurship skills.’

He expressed confidence that the proposed ‘Youth Fund would provide a vehicle for assured socioeconomic security for Nigerian youths, to galvanize them to become employers of labour, self reliance and captains of industry.’

He said the ‘Youth Fund’ will not only reduce unemployment and the social vices that characterize the Nigerian society today, but serves as a strong pointer that the country are very particular about its youths and have them in its plan.

Giving insight into the bill, the Federal Lawmaker said funding for the ‘Youth Fund’ will not be less than 5% capital estimate proposal from the Federation Account approved as appropriation for the fiscal year.

Other sources of revenue as proposed are ; profits accruing periodically from approved investments made out of the capital in the Youth Fund, one percent profit as declared by each private entity in the country, other revenue legitimately accruing to the fund by means not provided for in the Bill, and such other sums as may accrue to the capital in the Youth Fund from time to time.

Further insight into the bill indicated that( in Section 4 (1)) the youths will have a say on how the funds are to be administered by the Youth Fund Management Board, with its Chairman expected to be a youth appointed by the President on recommendation from the Minister of Youths and Sports and other recognized youth bodies.

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Kogi grants one-month grace for business registration, tax payment –commissioner

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By Friday Idachaba

The Kogi state government has given all business owners across the state one-month grace to register their business premises as required by law or face sanctions.

The state Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Mr Gabriel Olofu, stated this at a joint press conference by the ministry and the Kogi State Internal Revenue Service (KGIRS) on Tuesday, in Lokoja.

According to Olofu, the ministry derives the revenue on Registration of Business Premises Certificates/Renewals, while KGIRS collects the revenue for the state government, hence the synergy; which was in conformity with the provisions of the law.

He said that the Kogi State Government of Nigeria Registration of Business Premises Law 2007, Section 2(4) of Registration of Business Premises Law and other Matters Connected Therewith 2007, interpreted business premises to mean the premises on which the company, firm or individual carries on any business whether fenced or not.

“We urge business operators to pay their taxes directly into KGIRS specified account and obtain receipt or teller and thereafter proceed to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to obtain your Business Premises Certificates from the commissioner.

“Business operators in the state are given a grace period of one month to pay their taxes with effect from today.

“And at the expiration of one month, the state task force on revenue drive would tour round all business establishments in the state to enforce the law”, he said.

Olofu said the ministry and the KGIRS had Area Tax Officers in the various local government areas and other strategic positions to assist taxpayers make their payments with ease, adopting the cashless policy of the government.

He said that the list of businesses, according to the provisions of the law, covered a wide range of enterprises of about 100 different businesses.

“The list also contains new areas of tax drive, such as POS, miners, contractors handling jobs for the Kogi state government and others”, he said, adding that the state had many on-going developmental activities and required revenue to meet their demands.

Olofu said that the ministry remained committed to the task of overseeing commercial and industrial activities in the state and encouraged all business operators to pay their taxes correctly. (NAN)

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FIRS moves to tackle challenges with digital tax payers in a proposed bill

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The Federal Inland Revenue Service has raised concern over the challenges surrounding digital economy in terms of policing digital tax payers who have been very evasive.

To this end the chairman of the service Muhammad Mamman Nami has muted a plan to come up with a bill that will stipulate the rules and provision that would make it less cumbersome for the service to collect taxes on line from twitter, Facebook and others

He spoke yesterday during an interactive session with members of the Senate Committee on Finance, National Planning, Foreign and Local Debt; Banking, Insurance, and other Financial Institutions; Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Down Stream; Petroleum Sector & Gas on the MTEF and FSP for 2022 -2024

Responding to a proposal by the Chairman of the committee senator Adeola Olamiean who wanted to know if the service was going to come up with any bill he said

“You are aware of the challenges surrounding digital economy in terms of policing the digital tax payers like twitter, Facebook and others. We are going to come up with the rules and provisions that we would to compassionately  approved for us so that we can tax online businesses

“Finance bill is expected to accompany annual budget going forward so it is going to be an annual event it will give us opportunity to review feedback from the tax payers, and from our system and other critical stakeholders to block loopholes in the tax.

“You will bear me witness the stamp duty act came into being in 1963 and the figures in that stamp duty act for instance some of the dutyable instruments which are about 100 of them remain 10k, 50k while in real terms that is not going to give us any significant revenue or give us opportunity to raise revenue for the Federal Government. 

“If for instance you are using about N4 or N5 to print an adhesive stamp and the tax you are going to use it to administer is 10k I think there would be no need for us to collect that tax in the first place. 

“So these are the things we want to identify so that in line with the the fact that business processes are changing we need to adjust the payment to make tax payment simple to enable us block leakages and mobilise revenue for the three tiers of Government. We are not trying to increase or reduce but to change the figures to reflect the realities of the present time.

“If stamp duty rate.for contract is 1% we are not going to change that because the contract amount will determine how much of the stamp duty that we are going to get from the contractor or the agency that is engaging the contractor.”

In response to Senator Mathew Orhoghide who wanted to know whether the proposed bill with consequences for agencies that defaulted in remittances

He said, such stringent measures will help the service because some of the agencies were at hearing adding that it will make them to take FIRS more seriously in remittances going forward. “But as God will have it, we have powers in the law already that we can even make referred to the accountant General of the Federation to do deduction at source from either ministries, Department and agencies or the State Governments and we are already doing that 

“In April we made a publication for Nigeria where we gave ministries, agencies ad departments 60 days to make remittances of their taxes to the federation account failure of which the Accountant General will deduct at source directly and credit Federation account that is what we are already doing

“If you recalled last year you amended our establishment act and in it in section 25 you gave us the power to automate our cash administration processes. Early this year we had National tax dialogue where the President directed ministries, departments and agencies to connect with us so the connections are in progress and when that happens is when we are able to do the automatic deductions. 

“As it is today we are at the .each of the agencies because it is whatever is done today is manual it is what is in their ac ounying books is not known to the CBN to remit it to the federation account so until the direct to the CBN to do so, so with the technology we will automatically get our money.we are already automating the process.

He said the service achieved a total revenue collection of N4.950tr in 2020 as against N5.076tr approved by the Federal Government which represented 98% of what tgey were expected to collect.

“Out of the total collect of N4.9tr, none oil and oil components contributed N3.435tr and N1.5tr respectively

We have projected to collect in the year 2022, 2023 and 2024 is N4.4 tr, N6.2tr and N5.6tr respectively, if added to the non oil taxes that we intend to collect this will bring we project that by the end of the years 2022, 2023 and 2024 we are expected to have generated N10.1tr, N12.6, N12.5tr respectively

“The above projections were based on the following projections, Crude oil production to average 1.6million barrels per day for 2022, 2.2m bpd for 2023,  and 2.2m bpd for 2024. 

“This is based on current production average of 1.9m bpd at projected end of the Covid19 which is expected to see the coming of the economy 

Second assumption is that crude oil prices is projected at $56per barrel for the 3 years

“Thirdly average exchange rate is expected to at N410 per US dollar for the three years.  Tax rate is to remain the same for the period.”

Olamilekan said when the service start talking like it has done they can now see the reality in the N10trillion proposal.

On the  VAT judgement given in Rivers State and what their position and that of the Federal Government he said

“I did not comment on that because it is a case that is befxore the court of labor  

“But what I will assure Nigerians is that we have appealed the judgement at the Federal Court of Appeal and we have also applied for a stay of execution at both the Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal. This is what I can say on that very serious matter.”

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CBN bans forex sales to Bureau De Change operators

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Bureau De Change operators in Nigeria will no longer be able to purchase forex from the Central Bank of Nigeria as the Apex Bank has put an end to the sales of forex to such outfits

The CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, who made the disclosure after the Monetary Policy Committee’s two-day meeting in Abuja on Tuesday indicated that the operators had defeated their purpose of existence to provide forex to retail users,  as they had become wholesale and illegal dealers.
”We observed that the BDCs have continued to make huge profits while Nigerians suffered in pain.
”The commercial banks would be monitored to provide forex for the legitimate use of Nigerians.

He stated that the MPC also retained the Monetary Policy Rate at 11.5 percent at the end of the meeting.

According to him, the Cash Reserve Ratio and Liquidity Ratio at 27.5 percent and 30 percent respectively were also retained.
“The MPC made the decision to hold all parameters constant. The committee thought by unanimous vote to retain the Monetary Policy Rate at 11.5 percent.

“In summary, MPC voted as follows, one, retain MPR at 11.5 percent; retain the asymmetric corridor of +100/-700 basis points around the MPR; retain the CRR at 27.5 percent, and retain the Liquidity Ratio at 30 percent,” he said.

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