Search Site: OnlineNigeria

Close






Senate Probes N5.5bn Sugar Council Levy

Posted by From Kola Ologbondiyan in Abuja on 2005/10/02 | Views: 409 |

Senate Probes N5.5bn Sugar Council Levy


The Senate Committee on Finance yesterday gave indications that it would investigate the dedicated accounts opened for the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC) in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) where the council's N5 billion is believed to be hanging.

The Senate Committee on Finance yesterday gave indications that it would investigate the dedicated accounts opened for the National Sugar Development Council (NSDC) in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) where the council's N5 billion is believed to be hanging.

Also, the committee chairman, Senator Effiong Bob (PDP, Akwa Ibom), frowned at the Federal Government's policy of tax waiving, arguing that this would have to be discouraged.

The revelation that the NSDC’s N5bn was stuck with the CBN emerged during the a session held by the committee on a Bill for an Act to Amend the National Sugar Development Council Act 2004 with a view to expunging the clause that mandates importers of sugar to pay ten percent surcharge to the council with the aim of attaining a reasonable self-sufficiency in the local sugar consumption requirement of the country.

According to the Nigeria Custom Service Assistant Comptroller-General (Tarrif & Trade) Mrs. Faith Umoh, told the committee that the service had collected a total of N7.7bn on behalf of the council in the last eleven years and remitted the sum to the Sugar Levy Account.

"In the pursuance of its objectives, the council is empowered to source its funds among others through a levy on the CIF value of all imported sugar into the country. At initiation, the levy was fixed at five per cent. This was subsequently revised upwards to its current 10 per cent by the Federal Executive Council vide Council Conclusion EC8 (2000) 12 of 23rd February, 2000. And again 10 per cent was re-confirmed by FEC approval of report of the committee on sugar development in Nigeria vide reference No. EC16(03)24 of 21st May, 2003.

"The role of the NCS has been the collection and remittance of this 10 percent levy to the appropriate Sugar Levy Account on behalf of the council," Umoh gave further details of the sum collected since 1995 which came to the sum N7, 774, 193, 865.40.

But the NSDC, in a position paper presented to the committee by Alhaji Abdulateef Olare, said the council has received only the sum of N2.2bn since its inception from 1993 and urged the Senate to pass a legislation that would ensure that the 10 percent surcharge be retained and paid into a dedicated account from which the council could draw its budgetary allocation after appropriation by the National Assembly.

"The levy is about the only protection available to local sugar producers in the country today. Without the levy and the tariff, both of which currently stand at 10 per cent and 40 per cent respectively the country would become the dumping ground for cheap sugar from the international markets.

"In contrast to the situation in Nigeria, the current level of tariff on sugar in some other producing countries are 118 per cent in Sudan, 60 per cent in India, 95 per cent in Indonesia. Also in some other sugar producing countries, especially the EU and US and Sudan local producers enjoy different types of subsidies which are not available to local producers.



Read Full Story Here.... :
Leave Comment Here :



Add Comment

* Required information
1000
Captcha Image

Comments (0)

No comments yet. Be the first!