Federal Gov’t wants to review taxes on alcohol

The Federal Government of Nigeria says it is carrying out a review of the current excise duties on wines and spirits.

This review is coming âs a follow-up to the approval about nine months ago of a 17% increase in tariff on alcohol and tobacco by President Muhammadu Buhari.

While still serving as minister of finance, Kemi Adeosun, had repeatedly argued that the review will increase government revenue and discourage the consumption of the items because of the associated health risks.

TheCable reports that Adeosun had said the proposed review will be implemented over a three- year period from 2018 to 2020 to moderate the impact on prices.

Bloomberg reports that the main alcoholic beverage makers in the country — Anheuser-Busch InBev SA, Heineken BV and Diageo Plc — have struggled to increase sales making the government to rethink the taxes.

“Following continued consultation by the government, it has been decided and approved that the excise duties on wines and spirit should be reviewed,” Paul Abechi, a spokesman for Zainab Ahmed, the minister of finance, said.

“The process has been set in motion through the relevant departments and inter-ministerial committees and it will soon resolve the matter in a mutually benefiting way.”

Nigerian Breweries Plc, Heineken’s local unit, recently reported that its net income dropped by 41% in 2018 due to “increased excise duty rates and a challenging operating environment”.

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