Firms in Nigeria to Pay Annual Levy for Hiring Foreigners

February 28, 2024
Expatriate Employment Levy

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

A new tax known as Expatriate Employment Levy (EEL) has been introduced by the federal government and it is to be paid by companies, which hire foreigners to work in Nigeria.

The scheme was launched on Tuesday in Abuja by President Bola Tinubu and it is to close wage gaps between expatriates and Nigerian workers.

The government explained that the policy aims to find a balance between leveraging foreign expertise and fostering local talent in Nigeria’s job market through the EEL, emphasising that it is not to discourage foreign investments.

It was stressed that the level would be paid annually by the hiring organisation and can only be waived if there are local workers with the needed expertise to do the job.

It is charged at $15,000 for directors and $10,000 for other categories of expatriates and must be paid on or before the last day of February of the following year via an online portal, with the payment receipt serving as a prerequisite for the issuance or renewal of work or residence permit.

According to the government, the initiative is to balance employment opportunities between Nigerians and expatriates, adding that a comprehensive handbook has been developed to guide stakeholders, especially foreign-owned companies, joint venture companies, organisations and indigenous companies that employ expatriates, to understand the concept as well as to comply with the new ideal.

At the unveiling of the scheme yesterday, Mr Tinubu said, “I consider it a game changer. It is important to know that EEL is a contribution recently approved by the government, which will impose an effective timeline on expatriates working in this country to be able to train and develop Nigerians.”

“I’ve been further assured that the project has the capacity of plugging loopholes and gaps that have bedevilled the country in dealing with security challenges, and movement of foreigners in and out of the country,” he added.

“There will be clear lines of implementation and effective acceleration of aims and objectives of this programme,” President Tinubu added, noting that, “Immigration matters, expatriate quotas and relevant stakeholders have to be effectively guided to make Nigeria the focus of the objective of this EEL.”

Aduragbemi Omiyale

Aduragbemi Omiyale is a journalist with Business Post Nigeria, who has passion for news writing. In her leisure time, she loves to read.

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