The Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission(NIPC) has said it gave Pioneer Status Incentive (PSI) also known as tax holidays to 34 companies seeking tax incentives and waivers in 2023.

The Deputy Director of Investor Relations of the Commission, Lovina Kayode, stated this a press briefing on Friday in Abuja.

She said tax incentives are meant to boost foreign investments into the country even though they have become a contentious issue due to the high amount of revenue lost to waivers granted every year.

Lovina stated that not all companies are granted tax breaks due to stringent procedures followed by the commission on waivers award. She said such stringent procedures are followed while considering companies to enjoy tax holidays.

She said, “The pioneer status incentive is a stimulus that allows a company to get three years of not paying Corporate Income Tax, just to get more investments.

“This process is stringent because our parent ministry and the federal inland revenue service are involved to make sure the right investors get this incentive.

“So far this year, we granted 34 applications and one of the things we intend to do is to ensure we are not just giving incentives to underserving companies. However, there is already a notion that Nigeria gives out too many waivers, incentives, and concessions.

“However, tax expenditure which means what government has lost by granting pioneers status incentive is just a small amount compared to what the country gains by granting these incentives to qualified companies.”

She further revealed plans by the commission would publish impact reports on the effectiveness of the pioneer status report on job creation and other economic activities to promote investments.

“On impact, that is one thing NIPC is planning on, next year. It is one of our biggest tasks to do an impact assessment. These incentives we gave out, how have they impacted the country in terms of job creation?

“How many jobs are the companies creating and what kind of import substitution has come about because we have granted these incentives and how much would the government gain after the three years of them not paying these taxes,” she added.

Recall that at the onset of the current administration, the Chairman of the Presidential Tax Reform Committee, Mr Taiwo Oyedele, in his report opine that Nigeria was granting tax waivers in the excess of N6 trillion and called for a comprehensive review to reduce tax waiver.

Earlier, the Executive Secretary of the Commission Aisha Rimi restated her resolve to facilitate and assist investors to stake their investments in the country in a bid to actualise the mandate of the Commission.