South African pay-television operator MultiChoice has increased prices for monthly subscriptions in Nigeria by at least 14%, after this month’s settlement with Nigerian authorities following a US$4.4-billion tax dispute.
The hike, effective from 1 April, was due to the rising cost of business operations and inflationary pressures, the local unit of the South African group said in a message to subscribers.
It said monthly subscription for premium viewing will rise to ₦21 000 (R747) from ₦18 400, adding that customers will pay ₦9 000 for value viewing, from ₦7 900 before.
Nigeria, with one of the lowest tax collection rates in the world, has been seeking to boost non-oil tax receipts to support its fragile economy and cut its budget deficit. But it faces double-digit inflation and low revenues which has hampered the government’s ability to stimulate its economy.
In June, Nigeria’s Federal Inland Revenue Service froze the company’s accounts and served MultiChoice Group with a ₦1.8-trillion tax claim for its Nigeria operation and a US$342-million claim for VAT.
MultiChoice, spun off in 2019 from Naspers, makes a third of its revenues elsewhere on the continent, with Nigeria its biggest market outside its home market. — Chijioke Ohuocha and Camillus Eboh, (c) 2022 Reuters