Sri Lanka government to spend Rs200bn for defence in 2009

Nov 06, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s government would spend 360 billion for capital expenditure in 2009, and 200 billion for defence, the island’s president and finance minister Mahinda Rajapaksa told parliament. Of late politicians have been trying to put more emphasis on income taxes, instead of indirect taxes where their spending is also captured. A day earlier, deputy finance minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said current expenditure would be 804 billion rupees in 2009.

Revised government revenue for 2008 is estimated at 700 billion rupees, and capital expenditure at 278 billion, he said.

Revenue for 2008 was originally estimated at 750 billion rupees. Capital expenditure was originally projected 335 billion rupees.

The budget deficit was estimated at 7.0 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2008, Rajapaksa said.

Income tax was a new record of 138 billion rupees, president Rajapaksa said.

“This was a record trend,” he said. In Sri Lanka salaries of state workers and politicians are free from income tax, but those in productive sectors, including state corporations are taxed.