Sri Lanka parliament approves tax breaks for Crown, JKH resorts

April 25, 2014 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s parliament has approved tax breaks for integrated resorts by Australia’s Crown group and Colombo-based John Keells group. The projects have drawn opposition fire for having gaming facilities with tax breaks.

Sri Lanka’s Bhuddist nationalist JHU voted against, the proposals, reports said. Government ministers have insisted that no approvals have been given for casinos.

Under Sri Lanka’s strategic investment law, large projects get sweeping tax breaks ranging from 10 year tax holidays, duty free capital goods and tax free salaries for expatriate executives, but each project has to be separately approved by parliament.

Crown’s James Packer is teaming up with local gaming tycoon Ravi Wijeratne to build the 350 million US dollar resort which will have a 400 room hotel, entertainment, shopping and conference facilities.

John Keells Holdings 650 million US dollar project will also have apartments.

The government’s information office said the projects were passed with majorities of 68 and 65 votes.

Yesterday tax breaks for a third integrated resort by gaming entrepreneur Dhammika Perera was also pass