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NIPC woos investors with new tax regime

By on February 26, 2015

The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission, Mrs. Saratu Umar, has said that the commission plans to initiate a new tax regime as a means of wooing foreign and local investors into the economy.

Umar, who spoke at a stakeholders’ forum in Lagos on Tuesday, noted that multiple taxation had been the bane of Foreign Direct Investment in the country.

She said, “The NIPC is working with the Federal Ministry of Finance to resolve the issue of multiple taxation and for a new tax regime as a way of retaining Foreign Direct Investment.

“We are also working to ensure policy consistency by trying to make the National Assembly to legislate on policies and pass them into law.”

Umar said the slump in global oil prices was an opportunity to diversify the economy and explore the nation’s potential in areas other than crude oil production and exportation.

She said that compared to other global investment bodies, the commission seemed far behind, hence the need to reposition it for greater relevance through business process reengineering and transformation.

“We need to provide effective and efficient services in a way and manner that meets the expectation of all stakeholders to play a greater role in investment promotion. We need to reposition the NIPC because the global oil price slump has created a sense of urgency to enhance the diversification of Nigeria’s economy towards non-oil productive sector. There is a need to leverage FDI as a means to economic growth,” she stated.

The Chairman, Heirs Holdings Limited, Mr. Tony Elumelu, said there was a need to boost FDI as a means of job creation.

“As we generate our foreign exchange, we also need foreign investment to come into the country to make our economy more resilient and create more jobs. The government is doing a lot already and we need to just keep making sure that our policy regime is good and incentives are there to encourage and help attract foreign investments,” he said.

Elumelu also commended the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, for implementing policies to stabilise the economy in the face of falling oil prices.

He said, “The CBN governor is doing a great job and deserves our commendation; the times are tough not just in Nigeria, but globally for commodities economies. I have been quite impressed with the way he’s managed the economy thus far; you can see efforts and strategies towards making sure that everything is brought under manageable conditions.

“For investors, who are long-term players, we think that the diversification of the economy will support what the governor is doing. We have reserves that can support the economy for a significant number of months, more than other economies.”