Nigerian government to collect between N3trn and N7tn annually through cybersecurity levy – CPPE

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An estimated N3 trillion to N7.75 trillion would be collected by the federal government of Nigeria in a single year from the 0.5% cybersecurity charge on online banking transactions, according to the Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE).

In light of the difficulties Nigerians are experiencing, the head of the CPPE, Dr. Muda Yusuf, revealed this in a statement Tuesday and demanded that it be suspended.

In 2023, electronic payments on its network amounted to N600 trillion, according to statistics from the Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS). Applying the 0.5 per cybersecurity charge would result in N3 trillion, he stated.

He went on to say that the government will make N7.75 trillion from the cybersecurity levy, given that industry statistics on electronic payments in 2022 stood at N1550 trillion.

A former director general of the Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Yusuf, has stated that the cashless policy is in grave danger due to the tax.

With the new law, he claimed, more Nigerians will start paying with cash.

He urged the government to halt the rollout and look for other ways to become involved.

Adding another tax on consumers and companies is not a smart idea right now.

The question of proportionality also arises. The project’s goal and the quantity of money being raised are related to that.

In 2023, the Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) recorded N600 trillion in electronic payments processed over its platform. N3 trillion is half of this.

According to the CBN website, the industry statistics for electronic payments in 2022 was N1550 trillion. N7.75 trillion is the result of 0.5 percent of this. What remains would be astonishing even after accounting for the exemptions granted by the statute.

Spending this much on combating cybercrime is hard to justify.

Meanwhile, N1.32 trillion was set aside for infrastructure in the 2024 budget, while N3.2 trillion was set up for defense and security. Simply put, these are appropriations. Less is frequently the case with actual releases.

Also, the measure would jeopardize the central bank’s cashless policy, which has come a long way.

There will probably be a shift away from using technological platforms and toward using cash.

He pleaded with the appropriate authorities to halt the legislation’s implementation pending a comprehensive assessment.

You may remember that the Nigerian central bank ordered all financial institutions to send half a percent of their customers’ online purchases to the office of the national security adviser.

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