Sri Lanka revenue soars after vehicle import tax cut: official

Aug 25, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan government tax revenues have risen sharply after import duties on vehicle imports were slashed, a senior finance ministry official said. The government earned 1,700 million rupees in July alone on vehicle import tax revenue after import taxes were slashed in June, S R Attygalle, director-general of fiscal policy at the finance ministry told our sister news website Vimasuma.com.

It was an increase of around 240 percent in vehicle import tax revenue compared with tax revenue in May of only about 500 million rupees before import taxes were cut.

“This is what should happen,” he said. “One of the objectives of reducing import tax was to raise tax revenue from vehicle imports. We expect tax revenue from vehicle imports to increase even more in August compared with July.”

The government slashed the effective tax rate on vehicle imports by about 50 percent in June in order to encourage more vehicle imports as business revives with the end of the island’s 30-year ethnic war in May 2009.

Prices of vehicles fell after import taxes were slashed.

Atygalle said he expects vehicle prices to fall further.

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