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Reps panel proposes ban on importation of ALL goods produced locally to strengthen naira

Reps panel proposes ban on importation of ALL goods produced locally to strengthen naira
November 22
09:49 2023

The house of representatives committee on finance, loans, and debt management, has recommended that all locally produced goods be banned from importation.

The house gave the recommendation on Tuesday while considering a report on the 2024-2026 medium-term expenditure framework and fiscal strategy paper (MTEF/FSP).

According to the lawmakers, despite the unification of the foreign exchange market, there is still pressure on the naira.

This, the house said is “due to the lack of stable foreign reserve as a result of the lack of exports of locally produced goods”.

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The lawmakers, therefore, recommended that “all items locally produced should be outrightly banned from importation and customs tariffs amended accordingly”.

‘MDAs ENGAGE IN EXTRA-BUDGETARY SPENDING’

The committee further said a significant number of the federal government’s revenue-generating agencies engage in arbitrary, frivolous, and extra-budgetary expenditure.

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The panel said most of the revenue agencies violate the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2007 due to the lack of punitive provisions in the document.

The house also raised eyebrows on how agencies — particularly those in charge of collecting stamp duties — do not use information and communication technology (ICT) effectively for revenue collection.

The green chamber panel said agencies do not also comply with financial reporting standards.

Consequently, the lawmakers recommended that MDAs should come up with approaches to determine performance.

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“That the federal government’s target-setting approach and its determination to enhance the major revenue-generating agencies’ collection efficiency will support the fiscal deficit estimate of N9 trillion (including GOES) is noted and hereby approved,” the committee said.

“That all ministries, departments, and agencies (MDAs) pay for services provided by other government agencies on time and in full unless it is determined that the beneficiary agencies are statutorily exempt from such payments.

“That the national assembly standing committees take prompt action to review the laws governing the activities of all revenue-generating agencies under their purview to identify specific sections or clauses that need to be amended to plug waste and increase the government’s capacity to generate revenue.”

The lawmakers also said the federal government agencies should ensure the deployment of ICT in the collection of all revenues by MDAs including stamp duty collection activities, to block leakages.

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