The Federal Government has been Charged to put on hold the proposition to re-introduce excise duties on a segment of the food and beverage industry .
An Economist and Private Sector Advocate Dr Muda Yusuf In his Comment on proposal to impose excise duty on soft drink said The excise duty proposition is not consistent with the desire of Mr. President to create jobs and to lift hundred million people out of poverty in ten years.
” If anything, it is a negation of the President’s aspiration on job creation and alleviation of poverty. We implore the National Assembly and the Federal Ministry of Finance to put on hold any move to impose excise duty on any segment of the Nigerian manufacturing sector”.
The manufacturing sector Yusuf said offers a good platform for the laudable aspiration of President Buhari to create jobs and lift people out of poverty. But if the burden of tax becomes excessive and unbearable on this critical sector of the Nigerian economy, the achievement of job creation and poverty alleviation promised by the president will be difficult to achieve.
” It is worthy of note that manufacturers [including soft drinks producers] are already paying numerous taxes and levies which put a lot of pressure on them. Some of the taxes and levies that are already being paid include: corporate income tax of 30%, education levies of 2%, VAT 7.5%, withholding tax, land rent, environmental tax and numerous unofficial taxes. There are also multitude of fees and levies imposed by many other government agencies at the federal, state, and local government levels”.
The appeal is that the Nigeria Customs Service and the National Assembly should have a rethink on this matter.