Sri Lanka taxes to go online

tax

Nov 03, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka plans to increase revenue collection by setting up a platform for the public to pay taxes through an online based system, the Commissioner General of Inland Revenue said.

“Tax is the price we pay for the country we want,” Kalyani Dahanayake, commissioner general of Inland Revenue of Sri Lanka told a forum on Monday.

“I think we would be able to go for a better revenue target with new system in place combined with the traditional methods we have.”

The Inland Revenue department’s “Revenue Administration Management Information System” (RAMIS) phase one will go on live from mid -November this year which is designed to address inefficiencies in the current revenue management system, officials said.

Phase two will be go alive from end of December and by October 2016, the tax system of the island will be fully automated.

Official said Sri Lanka’s University of Motatuwa is currently testing the system while officials from ICTA, Customs, and BOI is monitoring and advising when needed.

RAMIS is aimed at automating all the business processes of the department of Inland Revenue relating to tax administration.

This is expected to lead to a more accountable system for increasing revenue collection by enabling access to timely and accurate information, tracking collections, and enabling DIR to reach out to tax payers in a more efficient and effective way.

The increased revenues resulting from the implementation of RAMIS will create the necessary fiscal space for the government to channel the resources towards addressing needs of the country.

“Tax payers would be able to pay taxes from home using this online system,” U P S A Japalath, president of Inland Revenue Commissioners’ Association said.

“RAMIS will include E filing, E payment and an interactive web portal,”

“By December about 90 percent of all the taxes could be paid online.”

According to some analysts, Sri Lanka’s tax system is fairly regressive and most of the taxes are derived from indirect taxation where poor can be taxed more than the rich.

Revenue target of the Inland Revenue department has been increased to 602 billion rupees for 2016 from 516 billion rupee target in 2015.