FIRS to commence tax audit nationwide

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By Blessing James, Abuja

The Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Tunde Fowler has said that the agency would commence tax audit across the country.

Fowler, who disclosed this in a meeting yesterday in Lagos, said it was to improve impact of taxation on the country’s revenue and how tax administration could be enhanced to meet the revenue requirements of the nation.

He said the nationwide tax audit would ensure increased tax revenue collection, improved service delivery to taxpayers and enhanced voluntary compliance.

Fowler, who is also the Chairman of Joint Tax Board (JTB) said the board was determined to improve service to taxpayers at all levels and that a consolidated Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) Data Base was already in place under the JTB.

The FIRS boss said that all tax laws that were not in the interest of the taxpayers are already undergoing a process of review and that taxpayers and stakeholders must support tax authorities in the interest of the nation’s development.

“Studies however show that the extent to which an economy is able to grow sustainably and develop depends to a large extent on its ability to generate tax revenue to finance its expenditure and the efficiency of its tax system.

“FIRS has put in place various strategies and initiatives to cushion this effect and ensure that we are able to improve tax revenue collection on a sustainable basis. Well-designed taxpayer services, education programs, and creative measures can facilitate self-assessment and compliance.’’ He explained.

Fowler noted that the major determinant of tax compliance included changes in law, taxpayers’ attitudes to payment of right taxes and tax consultants offering the right advise to taxpaying public.

At the event, some of the stakeholders raised concerns regarding the number of taxes and levies being collected and levied by different government agencies which were mostly not remitted completely.

They commended FIRS for its effort towards deepen tax administration, but stressed the need for a regular interaction among stakeholders so as to improve voluntary tax compliance.

Stakeholders at the event included officials from Ministry Departments and Agencies (MDAs), Labour Unions, Tax Consultants, Organised Private Sectors across the nation.

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