KWACCIMA seeks private-public partnership, wider tax net
The Kwara Chamber of Commerce, Industry Mines and Agriculture (KWACCIMA) says it is high time the private and public sectors in Kwara State collaborated for sustainable development.
Opalekan Fatai Ayodimeji, KWACCIMA president/chairman, stated this at the 52nd annual general meeting of the association.
Ayodimeji said there was a strong need for both sectors to work together because the “current situation requires a strategic change of attitude by all stakeholders to breed confidence and trust on both parties.”
“The last one year has been eventful and exciting in spite of challenges which we faced. 2022 has not brought relief from challenges bedevilling businesses in Nigeria and the world at large.
“We still contend with insecurity/banditry, ease of doing business issues, foreign exchange rate challenge, incessant power outage, and the worst of all is the outbreak of the Russia-Ukraine. This has further compounded the inflationary situation by causing prices of diesel and aviation fuel to gallop.
“We are at a crossroads in our country and it is increasingly becoming difficult to do business. We face an environment of significant business challenges caused by dwindling national revenue, increasing national debt, rising interest and inflation rates,” he said.
Ayodeji, however, suggested that, “we need to work together; we need to be carried along on policies at the conception stage, not at the time of implementation. Consultation will breed confidence and trust on both parties.”
He also expressed concern over the delay in signing and release of certificates of occupancy to businesses, and appealed to the Kwara State government to fast-track this process for members.
“On multiple taxes and levies; we suggest widening of the tax net, and there is definitely the need for harmonisation of levies and oversight functions of the statutory agencies.”
Ibrahim Akaje, the state commissioner for business, innovation and technology, represented by Sani Ibrahim, the director of commerce, said the role KWACCIMA plays in the state was crucial to economic growth; thus, the association should step up efforts and partner with ministries, departments and agencies of the government to ensure massive development and industrial revolution.
Similarly, Harriet Oshatimehin, commissioner for mineral resources, commended KWACCIMA for contributing its quota towards creating more jobs and reducing unemployment in the state.
She said that the state government under the leadership of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq was committed to supporting the association to attain its ambition and as well move the state to the next level.