As the world stands on the brink of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to one another, Oyo state government has disclosed that it has concluded plans to begin the collection of informal sector tax with the use of mobile apps.
Also, the government stated that the annual collection of tax, especially among traders, markets and artisans takes immediate effect.
The government made the disclosure, on Tuesday through the Executive Chairman, Oyo State Internal Revenue Service, Aremo John Adeleke during a sensitisation tour and meeting of market leaders from 14 major markets across Ibadan at the Ogunpa market, Ibadan North West Local Government, Ogunpa, Ibadan.
Some of the markets whose leaders were present at the meeting include, Eleyele, Ifeleyele market, Dugbe market, Agbaje market amongst others.
Speaking on the purpose of the meeting, Adeleke said the meeting is imperative in view of the need to encourage traders, artisans, shop owners, market men and women, among others to continue to be awake to their civic responsibilities as a way of supporting the government.
Represented by the Director of Other Taxes, Mr Idowu Alao, the OYSIRS boss said the government has refused to increase the tax payable by the traders, market men and women, artisans, shop owners and all others operating in the informal sector because of its understanding of the current economic situation in the country.
He assured the traders that the government is doing a lot to ensure business prosperity and economic development in the state, noting that in no long time, the effects will translate to improved sales which will be felt by the traders.
In her brief remarks while educating the traders on the new modalities being deployed for the new tax collection regime, the state tax manager in charge of informal sector, Mrs Yetunde Awotona said the state government has not collected any tax from the traders since January, but have now perfected a means of well coordinated approach through the use of tax agents with the aid of tax collection application pre-installed on their mobile phones.
She explained that, the traders and people in the informal sector have been cooperative over the years in the payment of the taxes but that the OYSIRS deemed it fit to embark on the approach as a means of strengthening the bond of cooperation between the government and the operators in the informal sector.
Awotona added that the new modality would also entail the use of tax agent offices located inside the various markets across the state to make tax payment easier and more convenient for the traders.
She assured the traders that the technological innovations was introduced into the collection as an improvement on the initial complains of the people and have a better coordinated and seamless approach to ensure that all tax paid gets to government coffers.
In their separate remarks during the meeting, the traders appealed to Governor Makinde to give them a tax waiver for the remaining months of the current year.
They. however assured the government of their cooperation and support in the payment of taxes and environmental management.
Highpoint of the meeting was the display of the Point of Sales (POS) machines and other equipment that would be deployed for tax collection through the use of ATM cards
The traders also used the opportunity of the meeting to ask various questions to which the officials of the revenue service provided satisfactory responses.
Naira strengthens against dollar
Barely 24 hours, the Naira was forced to a downward trajectory by dollar scarcity, it bounced back, closing at N477 to a dollar at the parallel market in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Pound Sterling and the Euro traded at N608 and N550, respectively.
The Naira, however, weakened marginally at the investor’s window, losing one point to close at N386 to a dollar.
The volume of trade at the window shrunk by 1.83 million dollars when compared to Tuesday, to close at 18.44 million dollars
The Nigerian currency exchanged at N381 to a dollar at the official CBN window.
Oyo govt. will continue to support SMEs, Olaniyan assures
The Deputy Governor of Oyo state, Engr. Raufu Olaniyan has reassured the state’s government commitment to supporting Small and Medium Scale Enterprises in the state,
The deputy governor gave the assurance at the Commissioning of a new shopping mall ATM located in the Oke Ado area of Ibadan.
Olaniyan noted that small scale businesses with adequate support have the potential to be a major employer of labour.
He reiterated the state’s government desire to support entrepreneurs who chose to do business in the state, stressing that the present administration has put necessary machinery in place to make doing business in Oyo state stress free.
Alhaja Adeogun Tunrayo Muslimat, owner of ATM mall had earlier informed that her desire to set up business in the state aside profit was also borne out of her avidity to support the government in the area of job creation, and also boost the economy of her home state.
AfDB urges central banks to cut interest rates
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has urged central banks on the continent to act quickly by cutting interest rates to inject liquidity in view of impact of COVID-19 pandemic.
The AfDB , in its African Economic Outlook 2020 supplement amid coronavirus pandemic released on Tuesday gave the advice.
According to the bank, the targeted interventions should be implemented for affected firms and sectors and use macroprudential and unconventional monetary policy to support the economy.
It added that central banks could resort to their own forms of quantitative easing, targeted at funding the most affected sectors such as firms in the hospitality and entertainment industry.
The bank noted that other sectors to be assisted are airlines, hotel chains, logistics and sports by temporarily reprofiling or restructuring their debts.
AfDB emphasised that the apex banks could also support vulnerable groups by designing programmes targeted at micro enterprises and the unbanked in the informal sector, financed by government and potentially run by other agencies closer to the ground.
“The impact of COVID–19 on Africa’s labour markets will have disproportionate impacts on vulnerable groups, notably youth and women, who are engaged in the informal sector, or with only casual job opportunities in the formal sector.
“Assist vulnerable groups, especially youth and women. The COVID–19 pandemic can have differentiated socioeconomic impacts,” the AfDB said.
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