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Fowler denies 50% VAT increase claim – FIRS

Joseph Inokotong, Abuja

Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Tunde Fowler on Tuesday called for an increase in the number of Nigerians and companies paying VAT and not a 50 per cent increase in the VAT rate.

The FIRS in a statement Wednesday said contrary to reports in the media, the its Executive Chairman called for a reduction in Companies Income Tax (CIT) rate for small businesses so as to improve compliance.

According to the FIRS, “Though he indicated that there should be an increase in VAT rate by the end of the year, he NEVER, for once suggested a 50 per cent hike of any percentage increase at all.

“Rather, he promised improved collection in CIT, Petroleum Profits Tax (PPT) and VAT in 2019 relative to the collection performance of the Service in 2018.”

In 2018, FIRS collected the sum of N1.1 trillion in VAT N1,42 in Companies Income Tax (CIT) and N2.4 trillion in Petroleum Profits Tax (PPT).

To buttress its points, the FIRS presented a transcript of the interaction between Fowler and committee members of the Senate Finance Committee at the 2019-2021 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper ((PSP) interactive meeting on Tuesday.