The National Assembly passed the Finance Bill 2022 ("the Finance Bill") on 28 December 2022. The Finance Bill introduces certain amendments to existing tax laws including the Companies Income Tax Act (CITA), Customs, Excise Tariff, etc. (Consolidation) Act, Personal Income Tax Act (PITA), Petroleum Profits Tax Act (PPTA), Stamp Duties Act, the Capital Gains Tax Act (CGTA), Value Added Tax (VAT) Act, Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Act and the Public Procurement Act.
Key Amendments Introduced under the Finance Bill 2022
Some of the major amendments introduced under the Finance Bill are highlighted below. Under the Finance Bill:
- digital assets including cryptocurrency are recognized as chargeable assets and gains accruing from the disposal of such digital assets are subject to capital gains tax at the rate of 10%;
- Investment Allowance of 10% will not be claimable on capital expenditure incurred on plant and equipment acquired after 31st December 2022;
- Tertiary Education Tax (TET) rate is increased from 2.5% to 3%;
- the name of the "Federal Inland Revenue Service" is changed to "Nigeria Revenue Service" and the Service which is now clearly separated from the Board will be headed by a Commissioner-General;,
- capital losses on chargeable assets under the CGTA are tax deductible against chargeable gains on the same class of asset. Capital losses deductible for Capital Gains Tax purposes may be carried forward for a maximum of 5 years. Currently, losses incurred on the disposal of any asset are not deductible for capital gains tax purposes;
- companies engaged in upstream and midstream gas operations are exempted from the statutory restriction of capital allowance utilization to 2/3rd of assessable profits;
- the corporate tax rate of Companies engaged in gas flaring (as defined in the Finance Bill) is increased from 30% to 50%;
- Rural Investment Allowance will no longer be claimable. This will however not be applicable to qualifying capital expenditure incurred on or before 31 December 2022;
- income tax exemption on 25% of incomes in convertible currencies derived from tourists by companies engaged as hoteliers (subject to certain conditions) has been removed;
- a levy of 0.5% is imposed on all eligible goods imported into Nigeria from outside Africa. The levy is meant to be a source for financing capital contributions, subscriptions and other financial obligations to the Africa Union, African Development Bank, Africa Export-Import Bank and other multilateral institutions as may be designated by the Minister;
- contributions made to approved decommissioning and abandonment funds, schemes, etc. are tax deductible under the Petroleum Profits Tax Act;
- an importer of goods purchased online, from a non-resident supplier who has been appointed by the tax authority to collect VAT, is required to provide proof of such appointment and VAT charged on the invoice as a condition for clearing the goods with the Nigerian Customs Service without any further VAT payment;
- the federal tax authority (i.e. the Nigeria Revenue Service) is empowered to raise Value Added Tax assessment on dispositions and related party transactions, which it deems to be artificial or fictitious in nature. This is a newly introduced general anti-avoidance transfer pricing rule;
- all public procurement carried out by any public officer shall be conducted based on approved procurement plans supported by prior budgetary appropriations subject to other existing regulatory requirements. Any public officer that fails to comply will be liable to 3 years imprisonment and a fine of NGN100,000 on conviction;
- all services provided in Nigeria will be liable to excise duty under the Customs, Excise Tariff, etc. (Consolidation) Act in addition to telecommunications services;
- premium paid to an insurance company in respect of a contract for deferred annuity for an individual or his/her spouse shall be tax deductible under PITA subject to a minimum holding period of 5 years. This means that any portion of the deferred annuity withdrawn within the 5 years minimum holding period stipulated in the Finance Bill will be subjected to Personal Income Tax.
The proposed commencement date of the Finance Bill is 1 January 2023. However, the Finance Bill is still currently awaiting presidential assent. Upon the signing of the Finance Bill into law by the President, there may be controversies or uncertainties as to the actual commencement date and retrospective application of the provisions of the newly enacted law.
We will provide further updates in due course. It is important to understand the impact of each provision of the Finance Bill on your business operations, projects, and tax obligations and also, to obtain professional tax and legal guidance in that regard.
Please clickhere to access a copy of the Finance Bill as published by the House of Representatives.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.