The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, yesterday called for the urgent review of the nation’s tax laws to make for a more efficient and productive tax system in the country.
Saraki, who gave the charge while inaugurating the Technical Committee on Reforming Nigeria’s Tax System at the National Assembly in Abuja, said the Federal Government’s target should not only be that of increased revenue, but evolving a tax system that was productive and efficient.
He lamented that there still existed a lot of duplication in the tax regime and called on the committee to harmonise the various tax instruments in order to make for greater ease of doing business in the country.
Saraki, according to a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Sanni Onogu, in Abuja, said: “For a country like ours that wants to grow, we must adopt a more efficient and productive tax system.
“It is not just to increase revenue alone, I think it is also to address how efficient and the level of harmonisation of taxes across board, particularly as we operate a three tier system of government.
“One of the difficulties or frustration you find, from business people is where they have to pay similar taxes at the local, state and federal levels.
“There is a lot of duplication even from State to State. You see people moving goods from Sokoto State to Lagos and by the time they do that, they are made to pay similar taxes along the way at various inter-State and local government checkpoints.
“This at the long run makes business unproductive. I hope that at the end of the day you should have an approach that will bring in a system that is efficient, a system that reduces all these barricades and the different challenges on the ease of doing business,” he said.
He called for the expansion of the technical committee to include major players in the private sector adding that the committee should come up with an approach that would harmonise the tax process among the three levels of government.