Nigeria, other African nations lose $50bn to illicit financial flows – FIRS boss

Nigeria, other African nations lose $50bn to illicit financial flows – FIRS boss

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Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Babatunde Fowler, has revealed that Nigeria and other Africans lose about $50 billion to illicit financial flows.

He made the revelation in Abuja on Tuesday September 11 at the International Conference on Combating Illicit Financial Flows and Enhancing Asset Recovery for Sustainable Development.

The event was organized by the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, PACAC.

It seeks among others to proffer ways to improve sanctions and enforcement mechanisms for perpetrators of illicit financial lows and other acts of corruption; to improve international cooperation in enhancing asset recovery and asset return.

The two-day event was the second in its series, bringing economic and other experts from across the world.

Fowler said governments of nations on the must look for ways to continue to raise their revenue to enable them provide infrastructures and other amenities needed by their populations.

He expressed concerns over the agenda of Africa Union for the continent to be self-financing its budget in 2063. Fowler believes if all channels of finances are explored by governments in Africa, they could do away with donor funding before the period.

His words: “Being here is certainly a boost, not only to Nigeria, but I believe to most developing countries. There are lot of figures that are being …back and forth. But, certainly, it is clear that if one sets a minimum of $50 billion is lost by developing countries, especially on Africa continent.

“And, when you look at the requirements for the African continent and other developing countries, they say between $30 billion to $50 billion. Certainly, if this money was made available to these countries, these countries will be in better position to have required infrastructures, amenities for their residents and citizens.

“I am especially delighted that we have host of invited guests from various continents to come and discuss these issues. As tax administrator, we believe there are functions basically to fund our various governments. The AU Agenda 2063 says by then, we should be positioned to fund our respective budgets.

“My position is a bit different. I don’t actually believe that the donors of developed nations will even carry the developing that long. I think it is something we should address. There is no way that we as a developing nation, will be positioned to fund our budgets if this issue if Illicit Financial Flow is not taken seriously.”

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