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Ajayi supports FG’s plans on special tax for SMEs

Founder of Startup Association of Nigeria (SupAN), Dr. Fredrick Ajayi has hailed the new plan of the federal government to come up with a special tax for Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (SMEs), saying the development will further drive the ongoing diversification of the economy, vide SMEs.

Speaking in an interview on the sidelines during the maiden edition of the ‘Simply Nigerian Fair’ in Lagos Sunday, Ajayi said “Apart from simplifying tax issues for new businesses, it is important to create a special model devoid of rigorous processes in registering new companies in Nigeria.”

“The issue of multiple taxation has remained a major stumbling block for beginners in small businesses and their major enemy is the local governments who see them as oil companies because they operate in their localities.

Applauding the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar, who gave the hint on government’s plans to develop a seamless taxing template for SMEs at the event, SupAN argued that “Nigerians are not lazy people and we are always on the move to get something doing”.

“All startups’ need is a tax system that is supportive and not those that will be causing the locking up of shops and offices without minding whether things are going well or not.

It would be recalled that the Minister, Hajiya Abubakar haf assured that “The best solution to the taxation challenges of SMEs would be to leverage on technology”.

“Once you are able to use technology and SME-based tax, it will be shared appropriately and will reduce the hassles of multiple taxation where different people come to require taxes of them. We are working on it but we do not expect it to take effect before mid-2017, because we have to invest in the technology,” she said.

The minister called on owners of new businesses to work closely with the government and always voice out their challenges to relevant departments of the government.

 “We also have the Nigerian Export Promotion Council’s training programme for exporters as well as the African Growth Opportunities Act, which ends in 2025. These are all opportunities opened for our young entrepreneurs to export these fantastic products to the outside world.”