The Finance Minister said the measure is an attempt to boost the country's tax-to-GDP ratio.
She disclosed this on Thursday, August 3, 2017, while speaking on a live broadcast on her Facebook page as part of the government's Tax Thursday initiative of the Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS), she revealed that the measure is an attempt to boost the country's tax compliance rate, which is at a low 6%.
During the broadcast, she said, "We signed something yesterday on luxury goods; champagne, brandy, whiskey, wine, jewelry, high-end jewelry.
"We've signed something that will be a surcharge on first class and business class tickets, we are just doing the final parts of the implementation and we also want to try and amend the tax payer book on high end cars, and an additional surcharge on luxury cars.
She said people would be encouraged to pay their taxes if the government is more efficient in using the taxpayers' money.
She said, "If we move our tax-to-GDP ratio up, it means two things: One, we will be able to provide more services to our people. Many of the things we are not able to do are function of the fact that we don’t have enough money.
"We need to build more schools, we need to build more hospitals, we need to build more roads. This is not rocket science. Every country has challenges, there is nothing we are facing that other countries haven’t faced and they fixed it.
"Every poor nation has very poor tax compliance rate and every rich nation has high compliance rate. So we want to be a prosperous nation.
"So what is in it for the citizens? If everybody pays, there will be much more money in the pool to be spent on the services that we need.
"These things are what we call public goods, and they are funded from taxes. If you have been all around the country, you've seen the need, you’ve seen the number of people that are living in poverty, we can lift people from poverty if we have the right money.
"We could do so much more in the economy if we had the money. If our public school system improves, many people who are currently paying school fees will move their children back into the public schools.
"A lot of people that are very successful today were educated in public schools because the public schools were good; we can recreate that. Same with health system. A lot of people die needlessly because we don’t have the right health facilities."
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo signed the executive order to implement Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) on Thursday, June 29, 2017.