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MAN urges FG, states to harmonise multiple taxes

manufacturing sector

Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) on Tuesday called on the federal and state governments to harmonise the multiple taxes being levied on members, as they (taxes) constitute a threat to the growth of businesses.

The association equally urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to give directives to commercial banks to reduce interest rates on industrial loans, address the foreign exchange (FX) crisis, and reduce interest on other loans released as COVID-19 palliatives to one percent.

Francis Meshioye, the national president of MAN, and Rahman Bioku, chairman of MAN, Kwara/Kogi states branch, stated this at the 9th annual general meeting of the association in Ilorin, the state capital, on Tuesday.

Read also: Manufacturers grapple with N272bn unsold goods as inflation bites

The theme of the meeting was “Nigerian tax albatross: Solutions and reforms.”

Meshioye, identified challenges confronting Nigerian manufacturers to include “the harassment of manufacturers to pay multiple taxes and the collapse of infrastructure, especially roads leading to members factories.

“We are hopeful that the Kwara State government will effectively address these challenges with a view to improving the operating condition of businesses in Kwara State,” he said.

Read also: Concerns of economic slowdown prompt UK manufacturers to pause hiring plans

Meshioye, who was represented at the event by Kamoru Yusuf, the vice president of MAN, Southwest zone, cited recent developments brought about by the Federal Government reform measures, pronouncements and policies. “They include the removal of fuel subsidy, floating of the naira exchange rate and increase in monetary policy rate. In particular, the reversal of the clearly disingenuous escalation of excise rates on some products has made the theme of this meeting, which is “Nigerian tax albatross: Solutions and reforms” apt and timely. It will certainly add to the body of knowledge that will shape the tax ecosystem of Nigeria. ”

Read also: Nigeria’s business activity risks shrinking as manufacturers bleed

The MAN president further stated that “the poor performance of the national economy in the last few years, which the federating states are part of, has remained a source of major concern to all.

“Therefore, it has made it imperative for state governments that appreciate the contribution of the real sector in job and wealth creation, to institute a more effective and efficient consultative mechanism with the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria. This is to ensure the sustenance of the existing manufacturing companies and those that are on the verge of collapse under the weight of overwhelming macroeconomic, infrastructural and regulatory challenges.”

Read also: Textile manufacturers seek government grant to revive industry

Earlier, Bioku explained that the theme of the event was chosen “to conduct a long overdue assessment of the disharmony, the disarray, the controversies, the confusion, and the increasing conflicts which have unfortunately characterized the public tax regime in Nigeria.”

“These conflicts have set a number of manufacturing companies up against the government because we have had to confront several maladies in the tax space such as multiple and double taxation, illegal taxation, over-taxation, and all sorts of irregularities therein.

“Our sad reality today is that many industrial establishments have gone under, while the few ones still struggling to operate require monumental support from the government at this difficult time.

“As we endure the bitter pains of subsidy removal, these are our urgent recommendations to the government: All illegal and controversial taxes and levies should be dropped. All multiple taxes should be harmonised at federal, state and local levels.”

Kayode Alabi, who represented Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq at the event, commended MAN for complementing the state government’s effort to tackle unemployment in the state.