The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has issued the Income Tax (Common Reporting Standard) Regulations, 2019 (CRS Regulations).
This follows Nigeria's signing of the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters (MAC) and the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement (MCAA) on the Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information, signed by Nigeria on 17 August 2017.
Fundamentally, the CRS Regulations and the various agreements signed by the FIRS will allow it to receive specified information on the bank accounts held by Nigerian tax residents in up to 105 countries. In exchange, the FIRS will be obligated to provide similar information to these other countries.
The CRS Regulations have an effective date of 1 July 2019 and require qualifying Nigerian Financial Institutions to submit an electronic information return (i.e. a return that reports specified financial account information of certain persons) to the FIRS on an annual basis.
The information is to be provided in respect of "reportable accounts", which subject to certain exemptions, are the Nigerian accounts of persons who are resident for tax purposes in a foreign country with which Nigeria has signed the relevant exchange of information agreement.
Other relevant provisions include:
- First reporting year: starting from 2019 calendar year
- Filing deadline for information return: 31 May of the year following the calendar year to which the returns relate
- Penalties for
- Failure to comply with duty or obligation imposed by the CRS Regulations: ₦10 million in the first instance in addition to ₦1 million/month
- Failure by Financial Institution to file information return: ₦10 million in the first instance in addition to ₦1 million/month
- Furnishing false or incorrect information: ₦5 million
- Failure by Financial Institution or any person to comply with the FIRS' requirement in the exercise of its powers: ₦1 million in the first instance in addition to ₦100,000/month
- Failure by Financial Institution to keep records in accordance with the Regulations: ₦1 million in the first instance in addition to ₦100,000/month
Below is a copy of the Regulations and our Alert on the subject.
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.