Motor Owners

July 27, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s new car registrations rose 10 fold to 29,883 in the first half of 2011, amid 63 percent overall rise in vehicle registrations following a tax cut that increased citizen’s access to vehicles, official data shows. During the six months to June, Sri Lankans have registered 248,572 new vehicles up from 152,174 a year earlier, according to data released by the Central Bank.

Registrations of three-wheelers rose 80.9 percent to 63,386 and motor cycles by 28.1 percent to 123,148. Bus registrations rose 132 percent to 1,983 but goods transport vehicles fell 8 percent to 6,036.

An unspecified ‘other vehicles’ category rose 400 percent to 9,270. Car registrations were up 1,044 percent.

Sri Lanka’s rulers tax cars heavily while giving themselves tax free cars. State workers also get tax slashed cars, despite the island being nominally being democracy where everyone is expected to be treated equally.

A steep tax cut revived the auto market and also brought billions of rupees of revenue to the state. In April car taxes were revised slightly upwards.

In the month of June 5,069 cars were registered, up 736 percent from a year earlier, 13,753 three wheelers (up 71 percent), 22,690 motor cycles (up 21.