MTN pays N3.5tr in taxes, levies

MTN Nigeria has paid N3.5 trillion as taxe and levies to the Federal Government in the course of its operation in Nigeria, the Chief Executive Officer, Karl Toriola, has said.

Toriola, who stated this yesteday at the unveiling of the telecoms media partnership, tagged ‘Media Innovation Programme (MIP) with the Pan-Atlantic University (PAU), said MTN has equally made capital investment of over N3.4 trillion, resulting in the establihment of about one million Small and Medium Enterprises in Nigeria.

He said MTN has over 68.8million subscribers and 34million data subscribers as well.

He said the MIP with PAU is intended to make available to media practitioners the tools required for them to perform their duties given the prevailing upsurge in the advancement of digital technology.

The Dean of the School of Media, Pan Atlantic University, Dr. Mike Okolo said the MTN sponsored programme would take six months, resulting in the award of certificates at the end of each phase.

Dr. Okoro called on interested participants in the fully MTB sponsored programme to apply, saying qualified media practitioners who successfully complete the programme, would be better for it in the discharge of their assignments, going forward.

Toriola also said MTN is ready to role out its 5G spectrum once the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), gives its nod.

“We are ready. We won the licence through a transparent auction process and we congratulate the NCC on this. We paid the full licence fee a month ahead of schedule. Within the information memorandum of the NCC issued, there was a timeline which indicated that we can launch in the second quarter of 2022.

We are prepared to launch on the day the IM allows us to do and we will explore with the NCC if they allow, so we are ready, even before that timeline,” he said.

Recall that MTN and Mafab Communication Limited had won the two slots put on offer during the auction that had $197.4million as reserve price. As part of the auction put in place by the Commission in the IM, the two winners and Airtel Networks Limited had submitted bids with an initial bid deposit (IBD) of $19.74 million, representing 10 per cent of the Reserve Price of the 3.5GHz spectrum by the close of the bid submission date of November 29, last year. MTN and Mafab were required to pay the balance of the bid price of $253.86 million on or before February 24, 2022. While MTN beat the deadline, Mafab paid at the expiration of the deadline.

MTN said the NIP, a six-month, fully funded fellowship for reporters, is designed to support the sustainable development of the changing media scene, saying it’s open to media practitioners across the spectrum, including print, electronic, online platforms and social media content creators.

The course is designed to give participants a greater understanding of Nigeria’s technology sector and the nexus between media and technology; it will also leave participants better able to adapt to changing realities. Fellows will also have access to professional resources and mentorship from the SMC faculty.

Toriola said: “We are driven by our belief that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected world and are driving accelerated growth by leading digital solutions for Nigeria’s progress. Against this backdrop, the media landscape continues changing at remarkable speeds, boosted by new technologies. Thus, it is only fitting that we support developments in the media with our infrastructure and enable capacity building initiatives to enable innovation in media practice.

“It’s a delight to partner with Pan-Atlantic University, who, through their expertise, have contributed to the professional development of the media industry, not only in Nigeria but across Africa.”

Also, Vice Chancellor, PAU, Prof. Enase Okonedo, said: “The School of Media and Communication was established to train professionals who will uphold the highest intellectual, ethical and professional values that promote creativity, critical knowledge, social responsibility and the spirit of enterprise. The MTN Media Innovation Programme could not have come at a better time for Nigerian media practitioners to imbibe these pertinent values.” The course, fully sponsored by MTN Nigeria, will be available to 20 applicants.

Toriola, in his address at the ‘Brunch with Karl’ at Lagos Business School, also said the organisation had committed over N3.4 trillion on capital investment.

Toriola said that MTN had enabled broad socio-economic development by creating values for shareholders, with over N2.5 trillion dividends paid since inception.

The CEO, who assured that shareholders would be smiling to the bank, said more than 30 million Nigerians had benefited from N28 billion investments through MTN Foundation.

According to him, MTN is a community that connects to the society and is truly committed to showcasing and developing the boundless talents of the people.

“MTN has been enabling broad socio-economic development by supporting financial infrastructure through over 174,500 ATMs and POS for electronic payments, while it has also created alternative payment channels to 9.4 million active customers.

“It has equally provided high-capacity internet for over 160 public and private universities, polytechnics and colleges,” he said.

According to Toriola, MTN has committed N28billion, through Yello Jppe Initiative, to support a broad base of stakeholders.

He expressed the organisation’s commitment to carrying out its corporate social responsibility, stressing that it had provided jobs in every council across Lagos.

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