The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has issued a public notice to inform taxpayers of its plan to commence a nationwide compliance check of VAT and WHT with effect from Monday 12 October 2015.
The objectives of the exercise as outlined in the notice are to:
- Educate the taxpayers on certain VAT and WHT issues;
- Improve voluntary compliance;
- Reduce tax arrears;
- Boost revenue collection;
- Identify tax evaders through third party transactions; and
- Gauge the level of taxpayers/FIRS relationship.
Full-fledged audits will commence from 2 November 2015. You will recall that a similar verification exercise was carried out from 12 March to 11 April 2014. Given the current pressure on government revenue and the drive to increase revenue generation from tax, we expect the trend of tax audits to continue and in fact become intensified over the coming months.
On a related note, FIRS has also directed that tax payments can now be made without Tax Identification Number (TIN) using general TINs 16192267-0001 and 16192618-0001.
Watch my interview earlier today on CNBC Africa on the subject: