Nigeria’s finance ministry said in a statement Sunday that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved an increase in excise duties on tobacco and alcoholic beverages.
The ministry said the changes will take effect from June 4 this year.
In addition to a 20 percent tax on tobacco, the government will add an extra fixed tax per cigarette. A percentage tax on alcoholic beverages will be replaced by taxes of fixed amounts based on volume.
The move would have “a dual benefit of raising the government’s fiscal revenues and reducing the health hazards associated with tobacco-related diseases and alcohol abuse,” it said in its statement.
The ministry said the new regime was in line with a directive from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) regional bloc on the harmonisation of member-states’ legislation on excise duties.
Raising duties in Nigeria for alcohol could further hit consumer demand amid fragile growth.
Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev), the world’s largest beer maker, expects its new $250 million brewery being built in Sagamu, Nigeria, to start production in the middle of this year, its head of Africa head has said. (Writing by Alexis Akwagyiram Editing by Peter Graff)
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