CITN harps on taxation as policy instrument for economic stability

Notwithstanding recent efforts by the Federal Government to reposition taxation for revenue increase, the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has said that taxation remains one fiscal policy instrument needed for stability, especially in the post-pandemic era. 
Outgoing president and chairman of council, CITN, Gladys Simplice, who stated this at the institute’s 29th yearly general meeting, said the body had continued its advocacy on strengthening tax collections to achieve 100 per cent funding of the nation’s budget. 

Giving a report on revenue statistics by the African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) and the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) that put Nigeria’s tax-to-GDP ratio in 2020 at 6.3 per cent, she said the institute had also continued engagements on regular education and enlightenment programmes as concerted plan of action to change the narrative of poor tax awareness by the citizens.

She said the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) collected N4.95 trillion in total tax revenue in the year under review, representing 98 per cent of the budgeted tax revenue target of N5.076 trillion for 2020, with Petroleum Profits Tax (PPT) accounting for only 30.6 per cent of the total tax revenue generated in 2020 while the non-oil tax collection accounted for 69.4% of the collections. 

With more advocacy by the institute to strengthen tax collections and government’s efforts at repositioning taxation to assume the front burner, she said achieving a 100 per cent funding of the nation’s budget through taxation was realistic.

Giving an overview of the operating environment under review, Simplice said it was important that tax policy initiatives and reviews in tax laws are well-thought-out and followed through. 
She said the government must avoid the propensity to introduce earmarked taxes to raise revenues, while neglecting the impact that such action would have on businesses and economic activities.

Citing Section 2.2.6 of the Revised National Tax Policy 2017, the CITN boss stated that the administration of taxes should be simplified for ease of enforcement and compliance.

She urged that members must continue to drive to achieve ease in tax administration and ultimately, voluntary compliance to tax laws. 

Simplice, who in her speech highlighted some of achievements during her tenure as 14th president and chairman of council of the institute, expressed confidence that CITN would continue to make a better impact and remain visible amongst professional bodies in Nigeria.

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