FIRS Launches VAT Automation System Pilot for Hospitality Sector


Emma Okonji

West Metro Limited (WML), a corporate technology provider, has initiated an auto-tracking system to accelerate the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) monitoring of value added tax (VAT).
The FIRS has initiated the automation of Value Added Tax in the hospitality sector to accelerate the monitoring and remittance of VAT in the sector.

The auto-remittance technology has been designed to automatically track VAT from various points of transaction in the hospitality sector all the way to final payment with as little human intervention as possible.

The Executive Director, WML, Soji Abolarin, who spoke at a stakeholder round table said the initiative was targeted at actualising the revenue collection goals of the service and plug leakages using improvised technology.

He explained that it would primarily perform automatic reporting of VAT at transaction source using the principles of fiscalisation and automatic remittance to the federation account auto deduct.

According to him, hospitality operators and regulatory bodies will expend less energy on manual records management as the electronic system would make necessary communication with the FIRS on their behalf.
Giving an analogy of the process flow, Abolarin said: “Merchant enrolls on ATRS platform with Tax Identification Number (TIN), corporate email address and CAC number. Once enrolled, merchants billing systems are enabled to provide Unique Identifier Codes for each transaction as well as Security Identifiers as confirmation from the FIRS.”

Abolarin further explained that every receipt would be delivered to FIRS in real time and response with security ID for FlRS authentication would be delivered in real time to the merchant.

The receipt is printed from the cash register and given to the citizen (tax payer) who is then incentivised with a raffle to report security codes to FIRS using the web application, QR code or short text message, the citizen verifies whether the receipt is really received by FIRS.

The seamless end-to-end reporting of all transactions enables the FIRS to ascertain with little dispute the total amount of VAT due by the organisation and subsequently collect the same automatically from the merchant.