The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has called for the concessionary tax rate for the Small and Medium Enterprise sector of the economy. Making the call in a communiqué issued at the end of its council meeting held over the weekend, the LCCI noted that small businesses were more vulnerable to the current challenges in the economy and suffered high mortality rate as a result.
In the communiqué signed by the Director-General, LCCI, Mr Muda Yusuf, and made available to our correspondent on Sunday, the chamber also expressed concerns about the persistent delays in the issuance of the Pre-Arrival Assessment Report to importers by the Nigeria Customs Service. It said the situation contributed to cost escalation for many businesses, payment of avoidable demurrage and high interest cost on borrowed funds. “The protracted delays in the issuance of PAAR is a negation of the policy of the government on ease of doing business. The LCCI, therefore, calls on the Comptroller General of the NCS, to urgently intervene.” The investigating activities of anti-graft agencies and regulatory institutions regarding alleged infractions by corporate organisations also occupied the attention of the chamber. It admonished that such investigation, as much as possible, be conducted in a discreet manner devoid of any form of media hype. “This is necessary to avoid unwarranted reputational damage and erosion of investors’ confidence,” it said. The LCCI added, however, that, “This position does not diminish the significance of compliance by corporate organisations with extant laws and the imperative of proportional sanctions for proven cases of infringements of the law. “The LCCI is a leading advocate of sound corporate governance in the country. Meanwhile, it is also important that there should be proper coordination between regulatory institutions and anti-graft agencies in dealing with suspected regulatory infractions to avoid duplication of investigative actions.”