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Presidential tax committee Chairman advocates for suspension of VAT on diesel   

The Chairman of the Presidential Committee on Tax Policy and Fiscal Reforms, Taiwo Oyedele, has advocated for the suspension of Value Added Tax (VAT) on Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) otherwise known as diesel. 

This is to help cushion the harsh economic effects of the removal of subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) also known as petrol by President Bola Tinubu. 

This was made known by Oyedele on Wednesday, August 9, 2023, while featuring on a Channels Television breakfast program, Sunrise Daily. 

The decision to be taken in the first 30 days 

Oyedele said, “What the President wants us to do is that within the first 30 days, there are those low-hanging fruits that people have generally agreed that this is a problem but nobody has done anything about it. 

“Personally, for example, this is not promising that it would be done. I think that we should suspend VAT on diesel because we removed fuel subsidies on petrol and prices are going up. 

“We are going to table it before the committee. These are the things we want to do in the first 30 days.” 

He said the committee, which was inaugurated by President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday in Abuja, has one year for the implementation of its policies but noted that the 30 days, six months, and one-year periods run concurrently. 

Oyedele, who had hinted at the likelihood of having only one revenue collection agency, further said that the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) is best suited to collect revenue for ministries, departments, and agencies. 

He said the presidential committee would look into excess bank charges, adding that businesses pay as high as 65 to 70 levies and taxes, but the committee plans to reduce the number of taxes to about 10. 

The committee chair said, “At the Federal Government level alone, we had 63 MDAs that were given revenue targets in the 2023 budget,” adding that “these agencies are being distracted from their primary function which is to facilitate the economy.” 

He also noted that the revenue collection in such agencies will be inefficient, as “they were not set up to collect revenue. 

What you should know 

President Tinubu had on Tuesday, August 8, formally inaugurated the Presidential Committee on fiscal policy and tax reform at the Presidential Villa, where he pointed out that government cannot continue to tax poverty when they are supposed to promote prosperity. 

The Presidential Committee on fiscal policy and Tax Reforms was set up by President Tinubu early in July with Mr Taiwo Oyedele announced as the Chairman. 

The move to establish a special committee on tax reforms aligns with the President’s agenda to remove all obstacles impeding business growth in the country.   

Oyedele, a former Fiscal Policy Partner and Africa Tax Leader at PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said within the next six months, the committee will actualize critical tax reforms, rewrite and harmonize tax laws, issue executive orders, roll out regulations, amongst others. 


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