1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Nigeria as a nation has the vision of becoming one among the world’s 20 largest economies in the year 2020; this obviously is the brain behind the priority attention the present administration is directing at infrastructural development which is essential for economic growth. A developed economy is one with the ingredient to stimulate investment and create wealth, this by implication offers an atmosphere that is business friendly and has the potentials for the actualization of the vision 202020.The desired outcome requires a lot of money to put the economy in a position that stimulates investment, therefore, tax policies need to attract potential investors, and the revenue from tax should be sufficient enough to meet the infrastructural expenditures of the government (Worlu, 2012).
Apere (2003) notes that taxation is a microeconomic and fiscal policy instrument; it involves the transfer of resources from the private to the public sector for the accomplishment of economic and social goals. It is an instrument the government uses to measure, access and control the informal sector that dominate developing economies of the world (Wambai and Hanga, 2013).
This research contends that taxation is an instrument of economic development. Towards this end, this study examines taxation as a tool for economic development using Federal Inland Revenue Service.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Recently, revenue derived from taxes has been very low and no physical development actually took place, hence the impact on the poor is not being felt. Inadequate tax personnel, fraudulent activities of tax collectors and lack of understanding of the importance to pay tax by tax payers are some of the problems of this study. The issues mentioned above will therefore constitute the problem to be addressed by this research work.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
i) To examine taxation as a tool for economic development in Nigeria.
ii) To find out whether taxation contributed to the development of Nigeria economy.
iii) To examine the role of taxation for economic development of Nigeria.
iv) To find out the importance of taxation in the development of an economy through proper use of its tools.
v) To make possible recommendations based on the findings of this research work.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
i) Does taxation as a tool aid economic development in Nigeria?
ii) Does taxation contributed to the development of Nigeria?
iii) Does taxation play any role for economic growth and development in Nigeria?
iv) Does taxation has any impact on the development of an economy through proper use of its tools?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
H0: Taxation as a tool does not aid economic development of Nigeria.
H0: Taxation does not play any role for economic growth and development in Nigeria.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The essence of this research work is to examine taxation as a tool for economic development of Nigeria. Thus, this study will at a wide-range be of benefit to the local, state and federal governments, as it will highlight the importance of taxation in the society.
This study would also be of benefit to employers and employees of Federal Inland Revenue Service Uyo, who has been experiencing incorporation of tax payers by paying their taxes regularly.
Also, the public, private sectors, individuals, business owners will find it necessary by encouraging them to comply by paying their tax.
It would also be of immense benefits to students of higher learning who may wish to carry out research on the similar topic.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study concerns about taxation as a tool for economic development of Nigeria with a particular focus in Federal Inland Revenue Service, Uyo.
1.8 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The limitations encountered in the course of this study include the following:
The limitation encountered by the researcher was that public officers fear to divulge information which to them may be detrimental to their work. Another limitation to the study is the outright inability of respondents to complete and the questionnaire in time.
Also, traffic congestion is one of the limitations of the study. The researcher faced challenges of meeting up the respondents in their offices due to traffic.
Finally, the researcher observed the non co-operation of some staff attitude in the board to make information available for the researcher.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS AND ACCRONYMS
FIRS: Federal Inland Revenue Service
TAXATION: This is the process of levying and collection of tax from taxable persons (Soyode & Kayola 2006).
TAX EVASION: This is the deliberate and willful practice of not disclosing full taxable income so as to pay less tax or it is a contravention of the tax laws whereby a taxable person neglect to pay the tax due or reduces tax liability by making fraudulent or untrue claims on the income tax form (Soyode & Kayola 2006).
TAX AVOIDANCE: Tax avoidance has been defined as the arrangement of tax payers affairs using the tax shelters in the laws, and avoiding tax traps in the laws, so as to pay less tax than he or she would otherwise pay (Soyode & Kayola 2006).
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT: Economic development is the sustained, concerted actions of the policy makers and communities that promote the standard of living and economic health of a specific area (Sheffrin, 2003). Clement (2013), also defined economic development as the quantitative and qualitative changes in the economy to enhance the living standard of the people.
DEVELOPMENT: Development is the process of economic and social transformation that is based on complex and cultural environmental factors and their interactions.