Tax concessions and exemptions hitherto given to many vital sectors of the country have been withdrawn by the new Inland Revenue Bill, JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said. Dissanayake said the new Bill that will replace the Inland Revenue Act of 2006 has been prepared to cater to IMF demands.He said they will do all in their capacity to defeat it.
Addressing a press conference at the JVP headquarters in Battaramulla yesterday, the JVP Leader said the Bill could only be defeated by a people’s movement outside Parliament.
“The new Bill has withdrawn the 50 percent concession hitherto provided to the income obtained from stage dramas and first print of publications. Those involved in music industry were earlier exempted from income tax, but the proposed Bill has made them liable to pay income tax. The aid given to undergraduates, the gifts of the President, the rewards given to elderly people upon maturity of life insurance will also be taxed,” he said.
The MP pointed out education, innovation, agriculture and Small and Medium Scale Entrepreneurs will also be badly affected due to increase of taxes.
“The tax on the prizes of lottery draws has been increased from 10 to 14 percent. The Bill has proposed more tax revisions than a budget. All employees earning more than Rs 500,000 per year will have to pay the PAYE tax.
The tax exemptions on professional bodies such as the Chartered Engineers’ Association, Sri Lanka Banking Institute, Universities, Ayurvedic Medical Council, Sri Lanka Medical Council, Sri Lanka Printing Institute, Energy Conservation Fund have been removed,” he noted.
“Sri Lankans working for foreign companies will also be subject to income tax as per the proposed Bill. However, the income of foreigners who work in Sri Lanka has been exempted from the tax,” he added.