Nigeria seeks shares investment boost, grants 5-year VAT exemption on capital market fees


rp_NSE1-640x320.jpgNigeria granted market transaction fees a five-year exemption from value added tax (VAT) on Tuesday as part of measures to encourage investment in the share market of Africa’s top economy.

The exemption from the 5 percent VAT rate covers commissions on bond as well as equity trades.

“The elimination of VAT on stock market transaction fees will ultimately reduce the cost of transactions for investors, and will encourage investments in the Nigerian capital market,” Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) Chief Executive Oscar Onyema said in a statement.

The local bourse has declined around 7.5 percent year-to-date as offshore investors cut back on their holdings on currency concerns and falling global oil prices.

The NSE said in a separate statement that it had been admitted into the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) at a meeting of the WFE in Seoul on Tuesday.

“This membership status reflects the exchange’s commitment to implementing the highest standards of international best practices,” Onyema said.

Nigeria announced a waiver on 0.075 percent stamp duty for all capital market transactions in 2012, which it has not yet implemented, Onyema said, without giving a reason. He added that he hoped it would be introduced soon.

Government officials were not immediately available for comment.