MTN Nigeria Dodges Alleged $2 Billion Indebtedness to FG
MTN Nigeria

MTN Nigeria Dodges Alleged $2 Billion Indebtedness to FG

MTN Nigeria Communications Plc (Ticker: MTNN) has dodged the alleged $2 billion indebtedness to the Federal Government of Nigeria in respect to outstanding taxes.

Its company secretary, Mrs. Uto Ukpana, made the clarification in a notice posted on the website of the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited on Tuesday.

Recently, the Federal Government said that telecommunication network MTN has come into an agreement with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) for the remittance of $2 billion owed the government.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed while hosting the Commandant of the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS), Ayodele Adeleke on Friday in Abuja.

MTN was said to have owed taxes between 2007 and 2017, according to the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF).

In January 2020, the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, slammed a $2 billion tax debt against the telecom giant.

Responding to the claims of debt to the government, MTN said that it didn’t owe the said amount.

Zainab, in her statement, said, “MTN is owing to the government but there has been a payment plan undertaken with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) they are following.

“They are in Nigeria and have investments all over the country and are following through with the payment commitment made with the FIRS.

In a reaction submitted to the Nigerian Exchange, Ukpana recalled that on January 8, 2020, the office of the Attorney General of the Federation had transferred the case of MTN Nigeria’s alleged indebtedness to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and the Nigerian Customs Service for resolution.

She explained that MTN Nigeria cooperated with the authorities and provided relevant evidence to demonstrate full compliance to all extant tax and regulatory obligations and discussions were ongoing.

“As recently as 2020, the tax authority commended MTN Nigeria for its prompt payment of dues.

”In addition, when asked earlier, the company agreed to make advance tax payments ahead of established deadlines to support the government’s revenue drive.

“This was also the case in 2020 when in response to FIRS appeal to support the government, MTN Nigeria made an early payment of its 2019 company income tax (CIT) of N46.9 billion.

“MTN Nigeria did the same this year between March and June, making early payments of N95.5 billion for the 2020 CIT which was due June 30,” she said.

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Ukpana pledged MTN Nigeria’s commitment to conducting its business in accordance with applicable laws, saying the group is also committed to contributing to the social and economic development of Nigeria,” the communication firm declared.

MTN Nigeria Dodges Alleged $2 Billion Indebtedness to FG