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COVID-19: LCCI seeks tax holiday for key businesses



Adebayo Obajemu

The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has said that a one-year tax break will enable businesses to navigate the storms as well as preserve employments.

The LCCI President, Toki Mabogunje stated this on Tuesday during a press briefing.

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Mabogunje stressed that with the COVID-19 induced lockdown in some states, findings show that majority of business owners plan to cut down salaries, downsize the workforce, or have a combination of both.

She maintained that policymakers and the organized private sector need to come together to rescue the economy from collapse at this critical time.

“Businesses therefore request adequate stimulus and intervention to preserve investments and save jobs. More than half (54%) of business owners want banks to reduce interest rate and give moratorium on loans, 29 percent want a reduction in tax liabilities, while 17 percent want waivers on import duties and demurrages.”

The Chamber also proposed that; “A year tax break for healthcare & pharmaceutical companies, airlines, manufacturers, agro-processors, SMEs and hospitality players.”

It also called for the temporary suspension of a 50 percent increase in VAT rate till year-end, and also, “P.A.Y.E should be suspended for the next six months.”

This according to the chamber, would help boost the purchasing power and aggregate demand, thereby stimulating the economy.

For the aviation industry, LCCI asked for support towards augmenting insurance premiums which are dollar-denominated due to lack of local capacity.

LCCI also called on the government to focus on the completion of critical infrastructure projects nationwide such as the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, Lagos-Ibadan rail project, Enugu Airport, the Second Niger Bridge, East-West Road, among others

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