The federal executive council (FEC) has granted MTN Nigeria approval to take over the construction of Enugu-Onitsha expressway under the road infrastructure tax credit (RITC) scheme.
The project sum is N202 billion.
Speaking with journalists after the FEC meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, Babatunde Fashola, minister of works and housing, said the approval was in line with the executive order 7 signed by the president in January 2019.
“In 2019, January 25, specifically, you might recall that President Buhari approved executive order 7, which was the road infrastructure tax credit scheme, to allow the private sector to invest tax liabilities in advance in infrastructure, and that policy has helped us to finance roads like or by Obajana to Kaba, Apapa-Oshodi, Oshoki-Ojota Expressway, the Bodo-Bonni expressway in Port Harcourt, about a 1000 kilometres covering 21 roads under the NNPC investment. So, there is increased optic for that policy. So, today we have two more,” he said.
He said MTN Nigeria will complete the dualisation of the 110-kilometre road.
The RITC scheme grants income tax credit to companies and individuals that provide funding for the refurbishment and rehabilitation of roads.
The scheme is a public-private partnership (PPP) intervention that enables the Nigerian government to leverage private sector capital and efficiency for the construction, repair, and maintenance of critical road infrastructure in key economic areas in Nigeria.
Participants will be entitled to utilise the total cost (project cost), incurred in the construction or refurbishment of an eligible road as a tax credit against their future Companies Income Tax (CIT) liability, until full cost recovery is achieved.
In August 2021, MTN announced plans to reconstruct the Enugu-Onitsha expressway, under the RITC.