Sri Lanka Parliament approves VAT (amendment) Bill

Tax in Sri Lanka

The Third Reading of the VAT (amendment) Bill was passed in Parliament of Sri Lanka with a majority of 45 votes.

A total of 100 members voted for the Bill while 55 voted against it.

Former Minister Roshan Ranasinghe, voted against it while Vadivel Suresh of SJB voted in favour.

According to State Minister of Finance Ranjith Siyambalapitiya, VAT would be imposed on 97 out of the 138 goods that were previously freed from the tax, in a bid to boost state revenue.

Speaking further, the State Minister said that Short Message Service (SMS) in fixed telephone networks will also be subjected to VAT, given the increased number of text messages sent.

However, medicines, equipment used by disabled persons, rice flour, wheat flour, vegetables, fruits, liquid milk, and the ‘Suwasariya’ ambulance service will not be subjected to VAT, the state minister assured.