Oct 18, 2019

Carbon Tax to be removed: Mangala questions Gota on bridging 415 billion loss due to his proposed tax cuts Featured

Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera said that the proposal for the removal of the Carbon Tax would be presented to parliament on October 23rd.

He said this at a media briefing held at the Finance Ministry yesterday (17).

The Carbon Tax introduced by the government would be removed from November 23rd, however, those who have already paid would not be able to reclaim this payment.

Sajith’s policies

Mangala Samaraweera also noted that the election manifesto of the New Democratic Front presidential candidate Sajith Premadasa would be unveiled on November 01st.

Reduction of VAT to 8%

Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera challenged the SLPP presidential candidate Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to explain how he intends to bridge the Rs. 350 billion that would be lost per year by his proposed reduction of the VAT and exemption of other taxes as promised by him during his political campaigning.

“If the VAT is reduced to 8% the income will reduce by Rs. 415 billion per year. This is the money we have utilised to conduct colossal development in the country despite the massive debt burden we were saddled with. Therefore, I ask Gotabhaya Rajapaksa from where he intends to cut corners to meet this deficit by reducing the VAT.

He said that Rajapaksa has no knowledge on running a country’s economy and for the sake of winning the election he is lying to the people and misleading them with his false promises that he has no idea how to deliver.

Last Wednesday, the SLPP presidential candidate Gotabhaya Rajapaksa promised sweeping tax cuts under his government. Gotabaya Rajapaksa says that under his rule, the existing VAT will be reduced to 8 per cent, and taxes imposed on salaries of labourers and middle-class workers will be removed. Also, steps will be taken to relax taxes on agricultural produce, while removing other taxes such as the telephone tax, he had said.

 “If the VAT is reduced to 8% the income will reduce by Rs. 415 billion per year. This is the money we have utilised to conduct colossal development in the country despite the massive debt burden we were saddled with. Therefore, I ask Gotabhaya Rajapaksa from where he intends to cut corners to meet this deficit by reducing the VAT. Does he intend to recover it from the education sector, health sector or salaries of soldiers? This year we have paid Rs. 747 billion as repayment of loans borrowed by the Rajapaksa regime in 2014,” said Minister Samaraweera.

Therefore, I ask Gotabhaya Rajapaksa from where he intends to cut corners to meet this deficit by reducing the VAT. Does he intend to recover it from the education sector, health sector or salaries of soldiers? This year we have paid Rs. 747 billion as repayment of loans borrowed by the Rajapaksa regime in 2014,” said Minister Samaraweera.

“In 2006, the Rajapaksa regime not only increased the VAT up to 20%, they even imposed this tax on essential commodities such as dhal, sprats, mung beans etc. Thereafter, in November 2014 they reduced it to 11% as an election gimmick. Then in  2016 we brought it to 15%, but we exempted the essential commodities from this tax such as onions, potatoes, dhal sprats etc,” he added.

Samaraweera expressing his views on the Payee taxes and the promise made by Gotabhaya Rajapaksa on removing the payee taxes said during the Rajapaksa regime all those who earned over 62,500 were taxed. “But we extended that to 100,000 exempting over 500,000 persons from having to pay such taxes.”

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.

Top