Written by Tharushan Fernando
05 Nov, 2015 | 6:58 am
A seminar on taxation, organised by the Sri Lanka Branch of the International Fiscal Association took place in Colombo.
The seminar was held under the theme, Legislations arising from January 2015 – Interim Budget and Budget 2015.
Chairman of IFA Sri Lanka, N.R. Gajendran stated:
Our private sector investment must be about 20%, government sector is 6%,so the balance 6% minimum. That is about 4.5 to 5 billion dollars year on year has to come from foreign direct investments. So there has to be incentives for investment in fixed assets and equity participation.++
Minister of Finance, Ravi Karunanayake, speaking on the occasion stated:
Tax holidays will have to be scaled down, and yes, there needs to be tax holidays in certain instances but periods should be three to five years: and not long holidays.
He went on to add that in the past BOI gave long holidays where the life of the project outranked the period of tax holidays. He stated that the BOI’s role has to be defined clearly and whether “we are going to have two administrations like in the past or one administration”
Minister of Finance, Ravi Karunanayake went on to state that a democratically-elected government has to respond between the wishes and the aspirations and the practical limitations. Because today the biggest problem is not that the people are not paying, but the people who can afford to pay are the guys who are not paying. So, I give a wake up call for them, the poor innocent people at indirect taxation level and who cannot tax plan themselves out, are squeezed to almost death but the people who enjoy a more comfortable, cushy and luxurious life, avoid what they’ve got to pay back to society.
He went on to note:
We are going to reduce taxes, ensure the compounds are higher and if anybody skips that, he’ll not be in normal society. hat probability of expecting to be outside the normal system will not be there, that problem will be very fixed.
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