By Adedapo Adesanya
The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has disclosed that despite the limitations brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, it has continued to record significant increases in collectable tax revenue from the non-oil sector of the economy.
This came from the Executive Chairman of the tax body, Mr Muhammad Nami, during a courtesy call on the Minister of Finance and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, by the members of the FIRS Board.
In a press statement signed by the Director, Communications and Liaison Department, Mr Abdullahi Ismaila Ahmad, the tax chief attributed the increase in the non-oil sector receipt to reform measures introduced by the FIRS board and management as well as the renewed vigour in the service workforce.
According to Mr Nami, non-oil tax receipts have consistently contributed 75 – 90 per cent of total tax revenue in recent months. For instance, Mr Nami disclosed that out of N490 billion collected by the service in July only N52 billion was from the oil sector with the rest coming in through non-oil receipts.
He commended the minister for her support to the FIRS and its board since their inauguration earlier in the year and solicited closer working relationship between the service and her ministry.
Attesting to Mr Nami’s disclosure, the minister commended the management and board of the FIRS for working to limit the disruptive impact of COVID-19 on government revenue through their proactive reforms, noting that this had made it possible for the three tiers of government to receive their monthly statutory allocations from the federation accounts.
The minister observed that Value Added Tax (VAT) and Stamp Duties receipts have boosted government revenue despite the pandemic.
Mrs Ahmed pledged to continue to support the management and board of the FIRS and tasked the service to work harder towards diversifying government revenue sources further away from dependence on oil.
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