Nigerian govt to generate N160.46bn from call, data taxes

The Federal Government will generate about N160.46bn from excise duty on telecommunication services in 2023.

According to the Nigerian Communications Commission, the combined revenue of operators in the GSM, Fixed Wired, and Internet Service Providers was N3.21tn in 2021. If the government implements its five per cent excise duty on telecom services, it will generate about N160.46bn.

The amount, however, assumes that the revenue of the telcos would be static. But in real terms, it could either be higher or lower depending on economic fundamentals in 2022.

Recently, the Federal Government disclosed a plan to implement a 5 per cent excise duty on telecom services in the nation.

This was revealed by the Minister of Finance Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, during a stakeholders’ forum on the implementation of excise duty on telecommunications services in Nigeria.

Ahmed, who spoke through the Assistant Chief Officer of the Ministry, Mr Frank Oshanipin, said the implementation of the excise duty was in a bid to increase the government’s revenue.

She said, “The duty rate was not captured in the Act because it is the responsibility of the President to fix rate on excise duties and he has fixed five per cent for telecommunication services which include GSM.

“It is public knowledge that our revenue cannot run our financial obligations, so we are to shift our attention to non-oil revenue. The responsibility of generating revenue to run government lies with us all.”

According to the Chairman, Association of Licensed Telecom Owners of Nigeria, Gbenga Adebayo, telecom consumers will bear the burden of the additional 5 per cent tax.

At the forum, the finance minister disclosed that the tax would be implemented soon but doubts have since risen concerning whether the excise duty will be implemented at all.

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