Cross River govt announces COVID-19 tax palliatives for individuals, businesses

The Cross River State government has announced COVID-19 tax palliatives for individual taxpayers and businesses in the state, approved by the Governor, Sen (Prof) Ben Ayade.

The state government said this regime of Tax incentives has been provided as one of many avenues for cushioning the impacts of the COVID-19 currently ravaging most parts of the world.

The Commissioner for Finance, Asuquo Ekpenyong Jnr explained that the COVID-19 tax palliatives in the form of tax exemptions will cover the period from February–December 2020.

Also, while breaking down the incentives, the Executive Chairman, Cross River State Internal Revenue Service (CRIRS), Akpanke A. Ogar, stated that individuals in the public sector ( under the Pay-As-You-Earn scheme) earning less than N100,000 are granted Tax relief from Personal Income Tax, in line with the provisions of the Cross River State Tax exemption law 2015 (as amended).

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While self-employed persons (artisans, hawkers, okada riders, tricycle riders, taxi drivers, petty shops, barbing/hairdressing salon owners, restaurants/eateries) are also granted Tax reliefs in line with the provisions of the CRS Tax exemption law 2015.

He also stated that Taxpayers will be allowed to make instalment payments in 2020 for outstanding Tax liabilities from 2018–2019 over a period not exceeding 6 months.

The Chairman also mentioned that the deadline for the submission of Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE) annual returns by employers of labour in the state for 2019 Tax year has been extended to 30th September 2020, with waivers granted on penalties.

Other Taxes, levies and fees received varying degrees of rebates from 50% – 100%.

In his remarks, the President of the Calabar Chamber of Commerce (CALCCIMA) Eld. Eta Ndoma-Egba commended government for the budget review and the Tax reliefs, noting that the Chamber had long advocated for these, and it came at the right time, as both the state and businesses were grappling with the challenges of COVID 19 economy. He also emphasised the need to plug revenue leakages to ensure that government maximises its internally generated revenue profile.

The CRIRS is the revenue collection agency of Cross River State and has since inception, launched various dynamic initiatives aimed at actualising its vision of being among the leading revenue collection services in Nigeria, towards facilitating the overall development of Cross River State.


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