The Senate says it will work to streamline the nation’s multiple taxes in order to improve the ease of doing business.
The Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, gave this indication while speaking at the 22nd Nigerian Economic Summit in Abuja.
According to him, Nigeria’s corporate taxation system needs to be reformed and revamped to get the country out of the economic recession.
A statement by Saraki’s Special Adviser on Media, Yusuf Olaniyonu, quoted him as saying, “With 37 million Small and Medium-scale Enterprises providing about 95 per cent of our jobs, as we promote ‘Made-in-Nigeria’, we must also use our legislative powers to amend the taxation laws. To get out of this recession, we must provide a business-friendly environment.”
Saraki also commented on the ‘Made-in-Nigeria’ theme of the summit and lauded the organisers for keying into the Senate’s plan to empower home-grown businesses and ensure that Nigerian brands were strong enough to be patronised locally and exported.
“Earlier this year, when in the Senate we started the ‘Made-in-Nigeria’ campaign, we knew how important it was, but we did not foresee how far it would go. To promote the patronage of our domestic businesses, the Senate has gone as far as amending the Public Procurement Act to compel government ministries, departments and agencies to key into this initiative.
“It is our hope that Nigerian businesses can begin to benefit from the over N2tn in government expenditure in the 2016 budget, so that we can reduce the demand on foreign exchange while simultaneously creating employment, moving towards self-sufficiency, increasing our Gross Domestic Product and boosting our Internally Generated Revenue.”
He also listed anti-recession bills scheduled for passage by the Senate in December as the Petroleum Industry Bill; the National Development Bank of Nigeria (Establishment) Bill; the Nigerian Ports and Habours Authority Act (Amendment) Bill; the National Road Fund (Establishment) Bill; the National Transport Commission Act of 2001; the Warehouse Receipts Act (Amendment) Bill; the Companies and Allied Matters Act; the Investment and Securities Act; the Customs and Excise Management Act; the Federal Competition Bill; and the National Road Authority Bill.
He expressed the resolve of the Senate to pass the PIB, and explained that it would be split into different sections for easier passage.