- Nigeria To Implement AEOI By 2020 – FIRS Boss
The Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Mr. Tunde Fowler has disclosed that Nigeria will implement the first Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) standard by September 2020.
Fowler, who stated this on Wednesday during a meeting with tax experts across the globe, revealed that the nation loses about $15 billion to tax evasion annually.
The AEOI is the exchange of information between countries without having to request it. AEOI exists to reduce global tax evasion.
The meeting focused on ways to combat offshore tax evasion through the exchange of information regime.
According to him, the present administration is committed to improving transparency in tax administration, increased tax revenue collection, enhanced effectiveness and efficiency in service delivery.
He noted that there was a direct connection between tax compliance, domestic tax investigation, tax audit, information-gathering framework and the international infrastructure for the exchange of information among tax authorities.
“Nigeria had demonstrated her commitment to improve transparency around tax matters when she signed a declaration and joined the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information on August 17, 2017.
“Furthermore, to facilitate the process of implementing the Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information under the Common Reporting Standard (CRS), Nigeria published the AEOI regulations in the official gazette of the federation,” Fowler said.
The FIRS boss stated that Nigeria has finalised and issued CRS guidelines, constructed and finished a dedicated building for the operation of the AEOI and put in place the necessary Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure to operationalise the AEOI processes.
“Nigeria has done all these to enable us to conduct the first exchange of information under the automatic exchange of information regime by September 2020.”
He advised ECOWAS sub-region on the implementation of the AEOI to tackle challenges of international tax avoidance, tax evasion, illicit financial flows, money laundering and other harmful tax practices, urging them to take “necessary steps to do so, especially as the automatic exchange of information portend huge benefits for domestic resource mobilisation.”