Multiple taxation, impediment to tourism development – expert

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Tourism-StakeholdersChief Tomi Akingbogun, the President, Federation of Tourism Association in Nigeria (FTAN), on Monday in Abuja said multiple taxation was a major challenge to the development of the nation’s tourism.

Akingbogun, who is also a hotelier, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)  that lack of enabling environment for investors was another factor which should be addressed.

He said multiple taxes were killing a lot of industries in such places like the FCT and Lagos and other states in the country.

He said: “Meanwhile other countries, Gambia, Ghana, are inviting Nigerians to come and invest over there, and they are giving tax holidays and they are giving land at affordable prices.

“That means, we are being attracted to invest in other economies, other countries are inviting these same investors.

“ Why is Michelin outside Nigeria? Government has no business in business, but to make the environment very conducive and attractive to investors.

“So, we investors in tourism have seen the need for government to know the problem and allow investors to expand. ’’ he said.

He expressed concern over the non-existence of a developed tourism and recreational facilities in the FCT, citing for example, in the FCT, the absence of any appreciably developed recreational facility.

“ That would make people who live in places like Kano or Kaduna to come and spend their weekends in Abuja.

“We don’t have any big zoo that can take a whole day for tourist to go through,’’ he said.

Akingbogun said the absence of logistics support for tourism investors in Nigeria had made many investors in the sector to relocate their investments to other countries.

He said the closure of hotels located in residential areas in the FCT was having a negative effect on the economy of the territory.

“Hotels can be in residential areas, but their activities can be monitored and controlled,’’ he told NAN.

He urged the governments at various levels to provide affordable land for genuine investors in tourism in sector.

He said that tourism could generate a lot of employment opportunities in the country if given the necessary attention.

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