Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s tax promises are dangerous: Mangala Samaraweera

Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s tax promises are dangerous: Mangala Samaraweera

Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s tax promises are dangerous: Mangala Samaraweera

Written by Staff Writer

18 Oct, 2019 | 6:44 am

COLOMBO (News 1st) – Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera expressed these views on the Finance Policy put forward by Presidential Candidate of the SLPP Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

He expressed these views at a media briefing held in Colombo today (October 17).

The Minister of Finance noted that Gotabaya Rajapaksa would reduce Value Added Tax or VAT to 8% and all agricultural taxes, telecommunication taxes will be removed.

“It also states that the value of the rupee will be brought back to 150 rupees. We are saddened by the fact that he is making such dangerous statements. If these proposals are implemented like this not only will the entire country go bankrupt but the entire country will become another Venezuela or another Greece” he added.

He added that if the VAT which is currently at 15% is reduced to 8% on average the country will lose Rs 350bn every year.

“In 2006 Mahinda Rajapaksa imposed a tax of 20% on essential food items such as potatoes, onions, sprats, and dhal. After that in the run-up to the presidential election in 2014, he reduced this tax from 20% to 11% as an election handout. In 2016 the VAT was set at 15% but even today we have not imposed VAT on essential food items. We do not impose VAT on items such as potatoes, onions, sprats, and dhal” he further added.

 

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