From Uche Usim, Abuja
The Federal Government targets to rake in N1.2 trillion in 10 years through the Revenue Assurance Solution (RAS), an initiative
designed by the Nigerian Telecommunications Commission (NCC) and the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy (FMCDE), that seeks to improve the collation and collection of Annual Operating Levy (AOL) from network operators.
Prior to this point, there was the review and issuance of compliance certificate of the Full Business Case (FBC) by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has given approval for the RAS project through the Design, Finance, Build, Operate and Transfer (DFBOT) Public Private Partnership (PPP) model.
The Acting Head, Media & Publicity of ICRC, Manji Yarling, made the disclosure in a statement.
According to her, with the approval by FEC and a requisite vetting by the Federal Ministry of Justice, the next stage will be the commercial close – contract execution, with Messrs 3R Consortium as the Private Partner.
The RAS, which is to span a 10-year period, is expected to increase the revenue accruals from AOL to the tune of N1,207,016,942,000:00.
“The NCC proactively initiated the process for the deployment of an RAS with the aim of blocking revenue leakages by ensuring that there are no errors in computing and collection of the AOL due to the Federal Government.
“The RAS is expected to block possible gaps in revenue accountability, using cutting-edge technology solutions and shall provide additional layer of assurance that the licensees of the Commission pay the correct Annual Operating Levies and meet other regulatory obligations without any miscalculations and/or exemptions based on faulty and inaccurate data and information”.
“The deployment of the RAS platform will significantly improve the NCC’s current AOL revenue computation and collection system, amongst other benefits’’.
The AOL regulations which came into force via a 2014 gazette by the Federal Government, as an addendum to the NCC Act of 2003, stipulates in part that: “Every Licensee that is a Network Operator shall pay to the Commission an Annual Operating Levy assessed at two and a half percent of the Licensee’s Net Revenue for the relevant period being its Gross Revenue less its Roaming, Interconnect and Bandwidth Costs for the period”.
It further stipulates that: “Every Licensee that is a Non-Network Operator shall pay annually to the Commission an Annual Operating Levy assessed at one percent of the Licensee’s Net Revenue for the relevant period being its Gross Revenue less its Roaming, Interconnect and Bandwidth Costs for the period”, she explained.