AN APPRAISAL OF THE LEGAL FRAMEWORK FOR THE TAXATION OF COMPANIES INCOME IN NIGERIA
The current wave of globalization and technological revolution has had a tremendous effect on companies‟ income tax in Nigeria. For instance, the e-commerce which is a relatively new technology epitomizes boundary, whereas the companies income tax law upholds the concepts of residence, fixed base and permanent establishment. Nigerian tax administration is ill-equipped to cope with these emerging tax problems. The old standard of corporation tax, the manual assessment and enforcement procedures cannot meet up with the fast- changing commercial activities of the companies. This consequently creates administrative ineptitude which to a large extent adversely affects revenue generation in Nigeria. There is therefore the need to probe into how the developments have affected our domestic Companies Income Tax Act. This thesisalso attempts to highlight grey areas in corporation tax system in Nigeria which affects revenue generation. Some of these areas of potential problems are: the problems of assessment and enforcement of corporate taxes, the negative effect of globalization on corporation taxes; the legality or otherwise of operating unincorporated treaties and Double Taxation Arrangement and finally the complication of enforcement and administration of corporation tax laws.This thesis entitled “An Appraisal of the Legal Framework For the Taxation of Companies Income in Nigeria” aims at critically examining the various laws and principles relating to the taxation of companies in Nigeria. Accordingly, the objectives of the study is with a view to measuring the adequacies or inadequacies of the said laws and principles, which if frontally addressed, their menace to corporate tax laws and consequently to revenue generation will be drastically reduced to the barest minimum. This research has adopted the doctrinal method which includes tax laws, various textbooks, treaties, case laws and articles drawn from relevant sources of this research topic. In the course of this research, it has been found amongst others that there are complexities in respect of the tax statutes, poor implementation and application of international corporate double taxation treaties in Nigeria, misinterpretation of corporate tax terms like “accruing in” “ brought in” or “derived from” and lack of enforcement skills in the assessment, collection of corporate taxes by tax administrators.The research concludes that unless there is a wholistic overhaul and/or introduction of a co-ordinated platform for the administration of corporate tax laws in Nigeria corporate revenue generation will continue to pose serious challenges in Nigeria.