Sri Lanka casino tax cut under fire

Mar 16, 2013 (LBO) – A proposal to lift a series of taxes from casinos and impose only a five percent tax has drawn fire from Sri Lanka’s main opposition, as basic goods including foods are taxed at much higher rates. Such firms get income tax holidays, relief from economic services charge, port and airport levy are usually removed, de Silva said. Duty relief is also given on imported goods.

De Silva said the two changes to Sri Lanka’s betting and gaming laws and the strategic development law was part of a series of laws that were being rushed through parliament without giving adequate time for discussion, undermining the legislative process in the country.

He said time was needed to do research and debate changes to legislation.

De Silva said at a parliamentary consultative committee earlier in the week, the head of the inland revenue service confirmed that out of nine casinos operating in the country only five were registered.

Tax Equity

He said it was not known whether they paid existing gaming levies, value added or other taxes.

“So is this equitable tax policy of this country?” de Silva questioned. “When you charge 85 rupees on a kilo of canned fish, when you charge 28 rupees