CITN Urges FG to Review Treaties with Developed Economies

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Sunday Ehigiator

The President and Chairman of Council, Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN), Gladys Simplice, has harped on the need for the federal government to set up mechanisms to review existing treaties and enter into more pacts with other developed economies of the world.

She made this recommendation amongst others, during her welcome address at the 22nd Annual Tax Conference with the theme: “Taxation and Economic Competitiveness: Imperatives for National Development,” held in Lagos, recently.

According to Simplice, the executive arm of government should, “set the tone from the top by making political leaders pay their fair share of taxes and ensure Ministries, Departments and Agencies account for taxes collected as part of galvanising prospective and existing tax payers; ensure government policies in generating revenue are matched with tax reforms that encourage growth through Executive Orders and sponsorship of legislative bills capable of promoting entrepreneurial development.”

He also stressed the need to work with Business Enabling Environment Secretariat to simplify taxes on businesses to attract foreign direct investments; “set up mechanisms to review existing treaties and enter into more treaties with other developed economies of the world for synergy and release of additional Avoidance of Double Taxation Treaties to improve the Nigerian economy.”

She also recommended that the National Assembly should, “action all tax bills for purpose of allowing taxation to achieve its fiscal potency latent within it; enact pro-entrepreneurial laws to nurture and develop entrepreneurial initiatives for the achievement of full employment with concomitant creation of wider tax bases.”

Furthermore, he urged the federal government to address the regress nature of the Value Added Tax (VAT) by including more items under the exemption list and giving clarity to existing ones whilst also considering progressivity in the VAT burden through the taxation of the class of luxury items on graduated rates; and also, assist the Executive to close loopholes in taxation of the digital economy through the enactment of provisions that capture this commercial sphere.

Also, he said the government should, “consider relaxing oaths of secrecy clauses, as far as possible to allow technology gain traction; and enact laws that help to make public Institutions run more efficiently without be-coming a drain on the National treasury.”