Eleven Nigerian banks paid about N8.08bn Information Technology-related levies to the government in 2019, the audited financial reports of the banks have shown. Analyses of the financial reports indicated that this is a reduction of N381.12m over the N8.46bn IT levy the 11 banks paid to the government in the corresponding period in 2018. The National Information and Technology Development Agency had established a Fund to which companies and enterprises with an annual turnover of N100m or more are mandated to contribute one per cent of their profits before tax to.
Companies liable to pay the levy as stated in the NITDA Act are GSM service providers and all telecommunications companies; cyber companies and Internet providers; pension managers and pension-related companies; banks and other financial institutions; and insurance companies. Some of the banks, whose annual reports were assessed, are Zenith Bank Plc, First City Monument Bank, Access Bank Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc, Sterling Bank Plc and First Bank of Nigeria Limited. Others are Jaiz Bank Plc, Union Bank Plc, Wema Bank Plc and Fidelity Bank Plc.
Zenith Bank paid the highest IT levy out of all the banks in 2019, reporting N2.41bn, a 17 per cent increase from N2.06bn remitted in 2018. GTB ranked second, reporting N2bn IT levy remittance to the government in 2019, a five per cent increase compared with N1.90bn paid within the same period of 2018. Having paid N1.02bn to the coffers of the government, UBA reported a 52 per cent reduction in its IT levy remittance in 2019 as against N2.31bn paid in 2018. IT tax expenses reported by First Bank rose by three per cent from N774m in the 2018 to N795m in 2019.
As contained in its annual report, Access Bank’s IT levy remittance to the Nigerian government in 2019 was N831.69m, an increase of 10 per cent over N752.43m made in 2018. Fidelity Bank’s IT levy remittance for 2019 improved by 21 per cent to N304m as against N251m in 2018. FCMB’s IT tax levy paid to the Nigerian government increased by 66 per cent from N120.46m reported in 2018 to N200.18m in 2019. For Jaiz Bank, the IT levy paid increased by 286 per cent from N5.44m in 2018 to N21.01m in 2019. With N102m reported in 2019, Sterling Bank’s IT levy paid to the government increased by four per cent from the N98m reported in 2018.
Wema Bank remitted N67.71m from its income to the government in 2019, compared to N56.05m it paid in 2018, recording 21 per cent growth in IT levy remittance. Details of Union Bank’s annual report indicated that the bank paid N245m as IT levy to the government in 2019, recording 81 per cent increase as against N135m in 2018. According to NITDA Act 2007, companies eligible to pay the one per cent levy are assessed and issued a demand notice by the Federal Inland Revenue Service.