Monday, 15 February 2021 09:36

Govt. imposes single GST on diverse products Featured

Sri Lanka’s tax collection efficiency will be improved through the introduction of an online-managed single Special Goods and Service Tax (GST) in place of the various goods and service taxes and levies soon.

This GST is now set to be enforced under multiple laws and institutions on alcohol, cigarettes, telecommunication, betting and gaming and vehicles, which accounts for 50 per cent of the income from taxes and levies.

It is expected through this reform to direct institutions under special legislation such as the Excise Ordinance to have a more focused regulatory engagement in facilitating the government to secure its revenues otherwise lost through sale of illicit alcohol and cigarettes, Finance Ministry sources said.

Relevant documents including the Finance Bill relating to the implementation and enactment of the tax is now being drafted to present and pass it in parliament soon, a senior Treasury official said, adding that this single tax will further simplify the country’s taxation system replacing several taxes under the new GST bill.

The new tax, one of the key proposals in the 2021 budget will be determined before its implementation soon; he said adding that the estimated revenue from this tax would be over Rs. 670 billion.

Government is expected to raise around Rs.1.7 trillion from direct and indirect taxes this year, provisional data and economic model calculations revealed.

But the Government will take necessary corrective measures as and when needed considering the present situation as a one-off, temporary issue which has arisen because of COVID-19, the official said.


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