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Finance Minister contradicts Accountant General, sets different date for new VAT regime to take effect

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The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, on Thursday contradicted the position of the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, saying the new Value Added Tax (VAT) regime kicks off on February 1.

Idris, had on Wednesday said that the new VAT regime became effective on January 13, the date it was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari.

According to Idris, he had to stop some payments on Tuesday because they were prepared using the old VAT rate of 5 percent instead of 7.5 percent.

The minister, while speaking during the inauguration of the new board of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), in Abuja on Thursday, said the law will take effect after all the necessary administrative procedures must have been completed, especially the gazette of the Act by the Federal Ministry of Justice.

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According to her, the February 1 commencement date had put to rest every speculation regarding the take-off date of the new VAT regime.

Ahmed, who noted that once a bill is signed into law, it takes effect immediately, said there were certain administrative procedures and formalities to be finalised before commencement.

She said: “The implementation of the Value Added Tax is to take effect from February 1, 2020, after all the necessary administrative procedures have been completed, especially the gazette of the Act by the Federal Ministry of Justice.”

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