US$2-billion tax demand against MTN Nigeria withdrawn

US$2-billion tax demand against MTN Nigeria withdrawn

Decision made after following careful review and due consultation with relevant statutory agencies.

The Attorney General of Nigeria and Minister of Justice (AGF) has withdrawn a demand for US$2-billion from MTN Nigeria and has referred the matter to the Federal Inland Revenue Service and Nigeria Customs.

This is according to a statement released by the operator which details that on 8 January 2020 it received communication via its legal counsel that the AGF had withdrawn the demand issued in August 2018.

The statement explains that on 4 September 2018, MTN announced that MTN Nigeria was disputing a claim for back taxes of approximately US$2-billion by the AGF. It adds that subsequent to this MTN Nigeria had commenced legal action in Nigeria against the AGF, which court action was most recently postponed to 30 January 2020.

"MTN Nigeria will consequently follow due court process to withdraw its legal action against the AGF and engage with FIRS and NC on this issue. MTN remains committed to building and maintaining cordial relationships with all regulatory authorities in Nigeria," reads an excerpt from the statement.

MTN Group CEO, Rob Shuter said, "We appreciate this decision of the Attorney General which paves the way to an orderly and amicable resolution of this matter. MTN remains fully committed to meeting our fiscal responsibilities and contributing to the social and economic development of Nigeria and all regions where we operate."

In early January 2020 ITWeb reported that MTN had confirmed that MTN Nigeria had completed the redemption of its preference shares with the MTN Group in December 2019.

In November 2019 MTN Nigeria collaborated with Huawei, ZTE and Ericsson to showcase 5G network infrastructure and initiated an awareness drive that began in Abuja.