FEC approves Finance Bill, says no increase in tax

Zainab Ahmed, Nigeria's Minister of Finance says FEC has approved 2020 Finance Bill without increase in taxes
Emeh Joy

The Federal Executive Council on Wednesday said it has approved the 2020 Finance Bill for subsequent transmission to the National Assembly.

The decision was made during a meeting of the council which was presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed had briefed the State House correspondents about the outcome of the meeting at after the meeting ended.

According to Ahmed, the 2020 Finance Bill was meant to support the 2021 fiscal year budget. She assured that the bill would not cause an increase in taxes as the nation's current situation doesn't warrant an increase in taxes.

She, however, noted that through the bill, "the Federal Government was seeking to make incremental changes to tax laws relating to Customs and Excise as well as other fiscal laws to support the implementation of annual budgets".

The Finance Minister explained, "In the last Finance Bill 2019, we reduced taxes from 30 per cent to 20 per cent for enterprises that have turnover of between N25m to N100m.

"We also moved taxes from 30 per cent to zero per cent for enterprises that have turnover of N25m and below, which means they pay no taxes.

"What we are doing in the Finance Bill 2020 is to further renew the education tax of two per cent for that lower category of enterprises that have turnover of N25m and below.

"Another example is the reduction in the duties for vehicles that will be related to the mass transit. Again, no increase in taxes and no increase in VAT".

She further added, "We also have proposed measures to create a legal instrument that supports a crisis intervention fund such as, the crisis intervention that we have had to put in place for COVID-19.

"So, we hope that we don't have other crisis but we need to create such a fund so tthat it iis available and it is legislated".

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