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Cut communications tax to 0.2% for the growth of industry, ATCON tells Senate

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Having observed the seriousness of the National Assembly to impose a new tax on telecommunications activities, the Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) has called on the lawmakers to reduce the Communications Tax put at 9 per cent by an executive bill to 0.2 percent from.

ATCON based its suggestion on the fact that the sector is the worst hit in cases of multiple taxation coming from federal, state and local governments and sometimes, host communities

Mr. Olusola Teniola, the President of the umbrella body of all telecom players in Nigeria made the appeal, when he led a delegation of ATCON on a courtesy visit to the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, in Abuja recently.

Teniola argued that the new tax on ICT services at 9 percent would result in excluding over 20 million Nigerians, which represents 10 percent of the country’s population from accessing telecommunication services.

He said “The proposed 9 per cent on ICT services is capable of excluding 20 million Nigerians from accessing the Internet and other ICT services,” he warned.

While noting that the survival of the Nigerian economy will be dependent on the number of Nigerians accessing Internet and related services, he said it doesn’t add up if whatever the government does  ends up not bringing more people into access.

Olusola said the truth is that there is severe over taxation in telecom industry, which explains the slow penetration of services into unserved areas of the country.

He said “The truth is that, contrary to popular belief, telecommunication operators and service providers are barely sustaining existence in these times. There are reasons to suggest that the desire to widen the tax net is laudable and that as things stand, telecommunications is about one of the few areas where the net-capture may be widened,” Olusola believed.

In his response, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki assured the ATCON’s leadership that the senate would only make laws that would get the economy going, adding that the telecom sector is critical to Nigeria economy.

He said “The ICT sector is critical to the Nigerian economy, as a result, the Senate would never make laws that would push the sector to negative performance rather they would make laws that would increase its performance to generate revenue and create jobs”.


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