The mortality rate of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) is very high, and among the factors responsible for this are tax-related issues.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said this on Monday in Abuja during the First Abuja SMEs Conference and Exhibition organised by the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI).
- ‘There’s nothing like unknown gunmen’, Ebonyi gov blames South Easterners for killings in region
- PODCAST: All You Need To About PIB Law
The vice president was represented at the event by the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Yalwaji Katagum, with the theme: “Solution Strategies for Resolving Tax, Regulatory, Packaging and Logistic Challenges Facing Nigerian SMEs”.
Osinbajo said, “The problem of taxation on the growth of SMEs is exacerbated by a lack of reliable data for statistical analyses.”
The vice president said the government had over the last two years, through the Finance Acts 2019 and 2020, amended various tax and fiscal legislations to align the Nigerian business environment with global standards.
The vice president said MSMEs in Nigeria had been widely reported to have recorded over 41 million participating enterprises, accounting for about 76 percent of the nation’s labour force and adding about 50 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
President of ACCI, Dr Al-Mujtaba Abubakar, said the chamber had identified multiple taxation as the principal headache that was killing SMEs, and in effect, deepening the unemployment crisis.
“We have proposed legislation to harmonise taxation for SMEs. I want to re-emphasis and strongly recommend that tax harmonisation legislation should be preceded by a presidential Executive Order. This will enforce compliance with pro-SMEs initiatives and interventions of the government.”