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FIRS issues 30-day window to obtain tax clearance certificates

The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has given taxpayers 30 days window to secure their 2020 tax clearance certificates. 
The 30-day window, which starts on January 2, 2020, is one of the major directives issued by the tax collector’s new Executive Chairman, FIRS

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The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has given taxpayers 30 days window to secure their 2020 tax clearance certificates. 

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The 30-day window, which starts on January 2, 2020, is one of the major directives issued by the tax collector’s new Executive Chairman, FIRS, Muhammad Nami since he was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

FIRS believes the window would ease the process of obtaining the tax clearance certificates, which can be used by contractors and service providers to seek contracts, obtain loans, renew permits, registration, franchises, and sign agreements. 

[READ ALSO: Nigeria’s taxpayer roll expected to reach 45 million soon(Opens in a new browser tab)]

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The exercise, which ends by January 31, 2020, is in line with the provisions of Section 101 (1) of Companies Income Tax Act 2004 and in conformity with Self-Assessment Regulation, 2011. 

“Notice is hereby given that the Service has put in place machinery to issue 2020 TCC for all eligible taxpayers from 2nd January to 31st January 2020. 

“The issuance of the TCC to ease the burden of taxpayers is in line with the provisions of Section 101 (1) of CITA LFN 2004 and in conformity with Self-Assessment Regulation, 2011. 

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“Taxpayers are therefore encouraged to take advantage of this initiative and apply for their 2020 TCC as soon as possible.” 

Nami sends warning to defaulters: The FIRS boss said the agency would not hesitate to place a lien on the bank accounts of companies that default on tax and mislead the tax administrator on their tax compliance level. 

Nairametrics had previously reported that in a renewed bid to bring tax defaulters to book in the country, the FIRS announced its intention to commence nationwide tax enforcement on December 18, 2019.

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FIRS disclosed plans have been concluded to begin tax enforcement against tax defaulters as they continue to fail in fulfilling their tax obligations. The FIRS acting Chairman also advised defaulting taxpayers to “settle their tax liabilities within Seven days of the publication to avoid any inconveniences or interruptions in their operations. 

If a lien is imposed on a bank account, some or all of the account’s funds cannot be withdrawn and used by the account holder. This is because a creditor or attorney has filed legal paperwork with tax defaulter’s bank in a bid to freeze defaulter’s funds.

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Patricia

Olalekan is a certified media practitioner from the Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ). In the era of media convergence, Olalekan is a valuable asset, with ability to curate and broadcast news. His zeal to write was developed out of passion to shape people’s thought and opinion; serving as a guideline for their daily lives. Contact for tips: [email protected]

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Hospitality & Travel

Increased air fares caused by reduced passenger capacity and increased taxes – stakeholders  

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Aviation, Nigerians hit with over 60% delayed and cancelled domestic flights in 2018

As domestic flights resumed Wednesday, passengers will now have to deal with a significant hike in the air fares which stakeholders attribute to the 50% reduction in passenger capacity.  

According to stakeholders who spoke to NAN, the government’s directive to leave the centre seats of the aircraft vacant was directly responsible for the increase in air fares.  

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Mr Tayo Ojulari, an aviation stakeholder, told NAN that this directive coupled with other challenges which the airlines had to deal with, would not allow them stick to the former air fares.  

“The cost of operations and FOREX is affecting airlines. Reducing passengers’ capacity to 50 per cent, has another economic implication for the airlines,” he said. 

However, other sources who spoke anonymously, hinted that the increase in air fares could have been influenced by taxes and other fares increased by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) 

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Coupled with other extra costs which the airline factored into the base fare, it was obvious that passengers would be paying these new fares for a long time.  

This increased fare may be the reason for the scanty terminals observed in the airports, although there are suggestions that passengers are still skeptical and wish to observe the reopening of the airports for a while.  

A check by NAN showed an increase across board all classes of tickets for one-hour flights from Lagos to Abuja. 

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Air Peace sold its Economy-Flexi Domestic plan for N33,001 for a one way Lagos-Abuja trip, while the business class ticket was sold for N80,000. 

Arik Air’s economy plan was sold for N29,189, while the business class was N78,532 for a one-way Lagos to Abuja trip. 

Arik Air resumed operations on Wednesday, with the management pledging to abide by the government directives.  

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The Public Relations and Communications Manager of Arik Air, Mr Adebanji Ola told reporters that protection of passengers and cabin crew members was paramount to the Airline, and there would be strict adherence to the directives given by the government.   

He also stated that Arik air has commenced three daily flight operations from Lagos to Abuja, in this first phase of the aviation restart. 

Air Peace also resumed flights on Wednesday.  

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Meanwhile, Dana Air has announced the resumption of its flight services on Thursday, July 9. The Chief Operating Officer of Dana Air, Obi Mbanuzuo said in a statement that the airline would operate three daily flights from Lagos to Abuja and back while the date for the addition of Port Harcourt and Owerri to be announced later. 

The Director of Aviation Security of the Federal Airports Authority of a Nigeria (FAAN), Retired Group Capt. Usman Sadiq, also told NAN that adequate security measures had been put in place at the airport, with increased manpower to ensure adherence.  

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It was also observed that passengers complied with the COVID-19 preventive screening measures before boarding, but stores within the airport were all locked. 

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Around the World

Just In: President Trump has been sued by MIT, Harvard over foreign students ban

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guidelines for foreign students returning to US schools

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University have sued President Donald Trump over a new policy that restricts foreign students, whose courses would be taught online, from entering/remaining in the USA.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the suit was filed today in the US District Court in Boston, Massachusetts. The suit alleges that the modifications that were made to the Student and Exchange Visitor Programme (SEVP) by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), came without warning.

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READ ALSO: America announces modified guidelines for foreign students returning to its schools

The impromptu nature or the modifications, therefore, has left Harvard and MIT with no choice but to think it was “arbitrary and capricious”.

Recall that ICE had on Monday announced the eagerly awaited modifications ahead of foreign students’ return to US campuses for the autumn semester.

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READ ALSO: Rethinking Inclusive Education: COVID-19 realities, post implications on education

One aspect of the modified guidelines, which has thus far proven to be controversial, required foreign students to remain in their home countries if their courses would be taught online. Foreign students already in the US were also directed to leave the country if their courses are online-based.

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Economy & Politics

Tax debt payments extended to August 31- FIRS

Tax debtors are to liquidate their outstanding tax liabilities on or before August 31.

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7.5% VAT: Implementation to begin Feb 1 – FG, FIRS redeploys 50 directors in massive shakeup ,FIRS moves to stop tax evasion with newly launched intelligence system , FIRS boss, Nami discloses why FIRS failed to meet revenue target under Fowler, FIRS to scale up tax compliance with new policies , FIRS tighten noose on deduction of stamp duty, CIT, others , Nigerians will now pay N50 stamp duty on electronic receipts – FIRS, Tax debt payments extended to August 31- FIRS

The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) announced it on Wednesday that it has extended the waiver of penalty and interest window on tax debts owned by businesses and individuals from June 30 to August 31, 2020.

In a statement by the Director Communications and Liaison Department, Mr Abdullahi Ahmad. The Executive Chairman of FIRS, Mr Muhammad Nami said the extension is a sequel to palliative measures set up by the FIRS to help businesses and individuals deal with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economy.

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READ MORE: FIRS to deploy new technology in tax collection, as MDAs refuse to pay 7.5% tax

“The latest extension applies to tax audit, tax investigation and desk review assessments, approved installment payment plans under Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme yet to be fully liquidated,” he said.

He added that there would not be any extension after the August 31 due date.

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READ MORE: Nigeria Joins Canada, Thailand and others in taxing digital companies

He urged tax debtors to liquidate their outstanding tax liabilities on or before August 31 in order to partake in the waiver of accumulated interests and penalties.

Nami also advised all businesses and individuals who fall under the waivers to contact their nearest FIRS Regional Debt Management Office and tax controllers for further enquiries.

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