It is now a done deal between the Executive and Legislative Arms of the Government for Nigerians to pay a 50% increase on Value Added Tax (VAT).
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday in State House signed the 2020 Finance Bill into law. This is sequel to its passage by the National Assembly and subsequent forwarding by the legislature to the President for assent.
Many were surprised that apart from a few whimpers, their representatives in the Senate and House of Representatives gave an easy passage to a bill that makes life more difficult financially.
A barrage of criticisms and few commendation have come the way of the President for the new law.
President Buhari, while presenting the 2020 Appropriation Bill to the National Assembly, had also presented the Finance Bill and said: “This Finance Bill has five strategic objectives, in terms of achieving incremental, but necessary, changes to our fiscal laws.
“These objectives are; Promoting fiscal equity by mitigating instances of regressive taxation; Reforming domestic tax laws to align with global best practices; Introducing tax incentives for investments in infrastructure and capital markets; Supporting Micro, Small and Medium-sized businesses in line with our Ease of Doing Business Reforms; and Raising Revenues for Government.
“The draft Finance Bill proposes an increase of the VAT rate from five per cent to 7.5 per cent , as such, the 2020 Appropriation Bill is based on this new VAT rate,” he added.
With the assent, Presidential spokesman, Mr. Femi Adesina says, there will be more revenue to finance key government projects especially in the areas of health, education and critical infrastructure.