ATCON Calls For No Tax On GSM, Cable TV Subscriptions In Nigeria

The Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), the umbrella organisation for telecoms companies in Nigeria has called for the federal government to drop the bill seeking to collect communication services tax (CST or levy) on fees payable by the consumers of electronic communication services in the country.

ATCON said that the move is an additional burden when it is applied to a subscriber base of over 173million.

According to ATCON, the 9% CST tax wold mean a double tax on SMS, data and voice service as a 5% VAT already applies on these services.

 ATCON then recommended to the federal government that the tax base of the country should instead be widened to include more taxpayers.
It was mentioned that only 13 million out 70 million were contributing to Nigeria’s tax revenue.

Since 2016, Nigeria had gone through a recession and experienced a low GDP growth rate coupled with the government’s recurrent expenditure that currently exceeds oil revenue.
ATCON said that due to all those factors that have affected Nigeria’s tax revenue, it understands that measures to increase government income through taxes should be explored.

However, the organisation noted that the government needs to also look into a reduction in the cost of governance that would fit within the new government revenue that is generated through oil receipts and taxes.

ATCON, in conclusion, recommended that the government reconsiders the passing of the bill, as it would add more burden to the already suffering Nigerians and could lead to loss of jobs in the sector.


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