KPMG discusses the new finance bill in Nigeria

10 February 2020 Consultancy.africa

Nigeria’s new Finance Act 2019 came into effect on the 1st of February, and the new bill has the potential to benefit multiple economic segments in the country, according to KPMG. The Big Four accounting and advisory firm held a symposium in collaboration with the Nigerian Stock Exchange on Monday to discuss the new bill.

The new act had a number of objectives, including the promotion of fiscal equity, support for Nigeria’s burgeoning small and medium enterprises sector, boosting government revenues, boosting capital markets activity as well as bringing more coherence between Nigerian financial regulations and global best practices.

The bill is a symbol of Nigeria’s intentions to become a centre for economic growth in Africa, and lead the region’s journey to becoming an integral part of the global economy. Calls for meeting international standards within the domestic economic environment have been coming far and wide from experts.

The Finance Act is also aimed at remedying some of Nigeria’s revenue collection woes, which has put considerable financial strain on public coffers in recent times. High rates of tax defaults have forced the government to consider a variety of tax collection strategies, although some experts have suggested that the best route to solving the issue is through broad economic growth.

KPMG discusses the new finance bill in Nigeria

The country is also aiming to boost its capital markets, keeping momentum with the capital markets across Africa that have recently regained momentum after a challenging period. The NSE has a market capitalisation of well over $30 billion, and is looking to consolidate this strong position.

KPMG and the NSE held a seminar at the Exchange in Lagos on the 3rd of February to dsicuss the new bill. CEO of the NSE Oscar N. Onyema said, “he signing of the Finance Bill into law represents a landmark achievement for the Nigerian capital market. Since 2014, the Exchange alongside Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as well as other capital market stakeholders have been at the forefront of advocacy with policy-makers and tax authorities for favourable tax structures for primary and secondary markets activities in the Nigerian capital market. The NSE, in its efforts to support the growth of the Nigerian economy and its issuers, is, therefore, happy to collaborate with a leading tax expert, KPMG to highlight the implications of these new rules and provide guidance on how to effectively navigate the provisions of the bill, especially as it relates to taxes.”

“Finance Act 2019 is landmark legislation that should be embraced by all stakeholders to ensure it achieves its laudable objectives. The removal of multiple tax footprints for securities lending and real estate investment schemes is expected to stimulate activities in those segments of the market. The generous incentives for the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Finance Act coupled with the launching of the Growth Board for capital raising by that sector from the Nigerian Stock Exchange, are timely interventions to drive the growth of the economy through the SMEs. Overall, the Finance Act 2019 is a welcome development,” added KPMG Partner & Head of Tax, Regulatory and People Services Wole Obayomi.


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