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States Generate N1.6tr, Says FIRS Chief

REVENUE collection and generation from states across the country rose from N800.02 billion in 2016 to N1.6 trillion last year, the Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Mr Babatunde Fowler said on Thursday.

Mr. Fowler, who is also the Chairman, Joint Tax Board (JTB) added that the cash represented 46.11 per cent increase.

He spoke in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital during the Northcentral Zone regional launch of the New Tax Identification Number (TIN).

He said the increase in revenue collection by states was underpinned by the economic policies of the Federal Government, adding that the policies have resulted in the expansion of the national tax base from 10million to 20million. He said this also expected to rise to 45million by the end of the year

According to him,  there was growth in the collections by FIRS from N3.30 trillion in 2016 to N5.32 trillion in 2018, the highest ever and representing 53.81per cent while non-oil revenue climbed to N2. 85 trillion,  an equivalent of 54 per cent of total revenue generation.

Fowler explained that the new TIN Registration System was underscored by a common desire by stakeholders to drive the financial regeneration of the country. This desire, he added, will be strengthened by the new system, which will lay the foundation for government at all levels to have access to the funding required to drive socio-economic growth and development exclusive of aids, grants and borrowing.

Fowler said the choice of Kwara for the Northcentral regional launch of the new system was strategic.

The state, he explained, has, over the last four years, been a leading light in ensuring sustainable internally generated revenue (IGR) profile for the itself and the region.

“Having achieved a 221 per cent increase in its collection from N7.1 billion in 2015 at the time of attaining its autonomous status to N23 billion in 2018, Kwara State Internal Revenue Service (KWIRS)  has become a benchmark for revenue authorities not just within the Northcentral region,  but nationwide as well.

“It is worthy of note that KWIRS is the only state revenue agency in the country to have been ISO certified,  with ISO 9001 for Quality Management System and ISO/IEC 22301 for Business Continuity Management System,” Fowler said.