…Experts seek elimination of multiple tax audits to boost economy***
Investors in the Nigerian equities market on Wednesday further N45 billion as the All Share Index (ASI) decreased by 93.23 points and closed at 26,790.10 compared with 26,883.33 achieved on Tuesday.
Subsequently, market capitalisation shed N45 billion or 0.35 per cent and closed at N12.930 trillion in contrast with N12. 975 trillion on Tuesday.
The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalised stocks, amongst which are: Cadbury Nigeria, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria, FBN Holdings, Dangote Cement and UACN.
The market recorded 19 gainers compared with 26 losers, with AG Leventis & Company and Livestock Feeds emerging the highest price gainers with 10 per cent, each to close at 33k and 55k, respectively.
Neimeth followed with a gain 8.96 per cent to close at 73k per share.
Wapic Insurance rose by 8.57 per cent to close at 38k, while Cutix appreciated by 8.27 per cent to close at N1.44 per share.
Conversely, Consolidated Hallmark Insurance led the laggards’ chart in percentage, dropping by 10 per cent, to close at 36k per share.
GlaxoSmithKline followed with a decline of 9.52 per cent to close at N5.70, while Oando dipped by 9.09 per cent to close at N3.50 per share.
Union Diagnostic dipped 8.33 per cent to close at 22k, while Cadbury Nigeria lost 8.16 per cent to close at N9 per share.
Similarly, the volume of shares traded closed lower with an exchange of 189.86 million shares worth N1.48 billion accounted in 3,410 deals.
This was against a turnover of 209.97 million shares valued at N3.10 billion Traded in 4,081 deals on Tuesday.
Transcorp dominated the activity chart with 26.35 million shares worth N26.58 million.
Zenith Bank came second with 22.51 million shares valued at N416.44 million, while Chams sold 18.92 million shares worth N7.84 million.
Fidelity Bank traded 11.11 million shares valued at N22.20 million, while FBN Holdings sold 10.53 million shares worth N69.998 million.
In the meantime, capital market experts on Wednesday called on the Federal Government to ensure the elimination of multiple tax audits to boost investment in the nation’s economy.
They made the call at the Sixth Triennial Delegates Conference organised by the Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN) held in Lagos.
The theme of the conference was “Elevating the Nigerian capital market for global visibility.”
Speaking at the conference, Mr Taiwo Okunade, Partner, Financial Service Group at the Deloitte Tax Function, said government must ensure the elimination of multiple tax audits currently discouraging investments.
Okunade said agencies of government, both federal and state, must work together to eliminate multiple tax audits and multiple taxation.
He spoke on the need to evolve a mechanism for collaboration between the federal and state governments to reduce multiple tax audits on taxpayers.
Speaking on the topic: “The role of taxation in developing the Nigerian capital market,” Okunade said tax audits should be harmonised, instead of different agencies conducting an audit.
“There should be harmonisation of audit under the umbrella of the Joint Task Force to conduct a single audit instead of different agencies doing different tax audits,’’ he said.
The expert explained that it had not been easy for companies or every taxpayer in the country to be paying taxes.
According to him, Nigeria is lagging behind in ease of paying taxes because of multiple taxation and other unfriendly tax laws.
He added that multiple tax audits and transaction costs discouraged investment as well as payment of taxes.
Okunade also called for the elimination of Value Added Tax on Commission and fees paid by investors to stockbrokers while investing in the capital market.
Also speaking, Mr Adeniyi Adebisi, ISAN National Coordinator, appealed to the government to pursue and implement policies that would enhance national interest rather than selfish interests.
Adebisi remarked that the capital market was a barometer for the nation’s economy.
He pointed out the need for the government to relax its hold on projects that required private sector involvement.
The coordinator, who spoke on the topic, “Capital Market as a Barometer of a Nation’s Economy,” said that if the capital market was developed, Nigeria would be opened to the world.
“The capital market does not work on its own but reflects the situation of the economy. When the capital market is not good, then the economy is not good.
The more government gets involved in detailed projects, the less development of such projects.
“If the capital market is developed, Nigeria will be open to the whole world. Government cannot do more than what it has money for and that is one bad thing about what is happening now.
“We need to take steps to develop our capital market to gain global visibility,’’ Adebisi said.
According to him, the elevation of the Nigerian capital market to global visibility would not be achieved by mere wishful thinking.
Adebisi, therefore, said all hands must be on deck by all stakeholders – governments, investors, regulators and companies among others – to push the market forward.
On his part, Dr Oduware Uwadiae, the Chairman of the conference said the economy would grow with a well-developed capital market.
“We cannot underestimate the impact of the capital market on the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). We have about 41 million registered MSMEs in the country.
“If one per cent of this number is nurtured and enlist on the Stock Exchange, it will make the market more vibrant.
“The capital market is a vibrant tool to grow the economy, especially for those that want to go into production.
“It is also the hope of the real sector, especially for those that intend to access funds,’’ Uwadiae said.