25 August, 2019

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All Parliamentarians Should Oppose The VAT (Amendment) Bill

By Mahinda Rajapaksa

Mahinda Rajapaksa

Mahinda Rajapaksa

The Bill to increase and broaden the application of the Value Added Tax will be taken up in parliament on 11 August. This draft legislation seeks to revive and give legal effect to all the objectionable features of the VAT reforms that were suspended by the Supreme Court last month. The new VAT Bill seeks to increase the VAT rate from 11% to 15%, to bring the small and medium retail and wholesale trade and the private health care services within the ambit of VAT and to mandatorily require all establishments with a turnover exceeding Rs. 33,000 a day to register for VAT. A tax on health care is in effect a tax on ill health. The more serious the illness, the more revenue the government will make from that patient. Everyone knows that those who make use of private health services are not only the rich.

Traders and small businessmen countrywide, opposed the 15% VAT imposed on the wholesale and retail trade because it will cause an increase in the prices of goods when it is passed onto the consumer and lead to reduced sales. Previously the VAT on the retail and wholesale trade was limited to large establishments with a turnover of more than Rs. one million a day. But when the threshold is brought down to Rs. 33,000 a day, that brings even small establishments within the ambit of VAT. When retail sales drop as a result of increased prices, that leads to a chain reaction whereby the manufacturers who supply the goods don’t get enough orders to be able to break even.

The small and medium sector has already suffered a reduction in turnover due to the general economic slowdown after the yahapalana government came into power. It was reported in the press that even the profitability of many large listed companies had declined in 2015. The fear is that the reduction in sales which will result from the VAT increase will destroy the small and medium sector. We have heard that due to the widespread opposition to VAT, the government is contemplating reducing the VAT rate and increasing the Nation Building Tax (NBT) rate. The public should be aware that VAT and NBT are both taxes imposed on turnover and the threshold for registering for both taxes is Rs. 33,000 and they are applicable to virtually the same goods and services so no difference will be made as far as the public is concerned by reducing the VAT rate and increasing the NBT rate.

Such attempts at deception must be resisted. The imposition of VAT/NBT on small business like eateries, barber shops, retail shops, repair shops, service stations, furniture shops etc as well as cottage industries will be a severe burden on that sector as they operate mostly on credit. Operations of small and medium business places in economic hubs like Dambulla, Embilipitiya, Pamunuwa, Pettah – just to mention a few – will be endangered. The government should be mindful of the fact that the small and medium sector is the largest employer in the country – not the government or the formal private sector.

What makes this increase in VAT most objectionable is that it is being imposed on the public to finance the salary increase and various other concessions that the yahapalana government gave against all economic reasoning in order to win the August 2015 parliamentary election. No previous government has taken such liberties with public finances for political purposes. I call upon all members of parliament to oppose the Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill when it comes before parliament on 11 August. I believe the president will also make an intervention in this matter as he has stated publicly that he will not allow unreasonable taxes to be imposed on the people. The VAT on ill-health and the VAT on the small and medium retail and wholesale trade should not under any circumstances be allowed to be passed into law.

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Latest comments

  • 20
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    Mahinda Rajapaksa

    RE: All Parliamentarians Should Oppose The VAT (Amendment) Bill

    MaRa MaRa ChaTu MaRa, Yes, but they also shoukd oppose the windfall; the parliamentarians are getting in Autos, and the Rs. 35 million they are pocketing.

    What about the Billions you stole? When are you going to disclose and return the money to the people?

    Can you turn the White Elephants Mattala Airport, Hambantota Stadium and other White Elephants into Black Elephants so that people do not have to spend money to maintain them? This is part of the reason for the VAT increase.

    Are you still pocketing the Car Windfall for the MP’s like the others?

    • 16
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      Amarasiri
      Do not worry with the imbecile.
      He has no knowledge of why the VAT need to be introduced and for that he does not understand.

      Clearly a pathetic desperate character.

      • 8
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        Analyst

        “Clearly a pathetic desperate character.”

        Unfortunately, 5.5 Million voted for him.need to spread the word and wean the fools, mootals and modayas from him. the are addicted to his lies.

        Mahinda rajapaksa worst lie ever told-ජනපති පැවසූ ලොකුම පචය

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dt4A8MdEoE

        The list is too long…

    • 1
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      Mahinda Rajapaksa

      RE: All Parliamentarians Should Oppose The VAT (Amendment) Bill

      However, we want to talk about the issues raised by Anura Kumara Dissanayake, and want your answers.

      රාජපක්ෂ පරපුරේ ඝාතන , වංචා , දුෂණ – Anura Kumara Dissanayake

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Ds1VBbm6Bc

      Hats off to Anura Kumara Dissanayake for his courage as we cannot see other politicians like him behaving bravely and exposing corruption by MaRa and cronies.

  • 13
    3

    A reasonable education is necessary to identify things around. In politics what one requires most is to understand the pulse of the people who have elected their leader to serve them. It is paramount to attend to their needs. In politics one must sacrifice their personal interests and needs for the benefit and service of the nation and it’s people and build a vision for the future of the nation. A good leader has no religion, caste or creed and is unbiased and serves everyone with the same spoon. MR failed in his mission as a leader and was racial minded and biased and he openly promoted racialism which eventually led to his defeat and possible incarceration from future politics due to questionable dealings with foreign and local contractors in national development projects. He may also be indicted for Thajudeen murder, ekneligoda,lasantha, rathupaswela, Etc Etc!!. A government to run taxes has to be imposed. If MR could be transparent and return all the ill gotten wealth stashed abroad this financial calamity facing our country could be improved.

  • 9
    4

    In going to courts, you and your accompanying rogues told this Government how to legalize the increase in VAT. So you are a party to this foolish act of the Government. You should have come to the Parliament and rallied all forces against the increase and vetoed it at the initial stage. What you are doing is speaking outside the Legislature on issues that affect the people and fail to represent even the people who elected you as a Legislator. That is how you fell into a rating of the 162nd place among 225 Parliamentarians. Please stand in front of a mirror and ask yourself: Am I doing it right and maintaining the dignity of being the ex President of Sri Lanka and presently as a responsible Representative of the People? It is still not too late to regain your proper senses and give up your GREED and PRIDE to serve this country. Even when you were in Power, I always reminded you of a very valuable teaching of Gauthama Buddha: “Asewanacha Baalanang” (Do not associate the undesirables). You are still doing it and you only and no one else will receive the results. To get the people to answer your call, live a dignified and a hnoust life.

  • 13
    3

    IF THIS GUY RETURNS ALL THE MONEY HE AND HIS FAMILY STOLE FROM THE HONEST PEOPLE OF SRI LANKA THEN WE DO NOT NEED TO INCREASE THE VAT

    • 2
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      THIS GUY IS RUNNING FROM COUNTRY TO COUNTRY WITH HIS GANG OF HOODLUMS TRYING TO RECOVER THE STOLEN MONEY STASHED AWAY. CAN SOMEBODY FOLLOW HIM AND CHECK WHERE AND WHO HE IS GETTING THE MONEY BACK FROM AND ARREST THE WHOLE CROWD.

  • 8
    3

    Mahinda,
    ” Thajudeen Murder: Former Narahenpita Crimes OIC Received Calls From Presidential Secretariat”( on another thread in CT).

    Thanks for your advice on VAT, for what it is worth in terms of content and your performance on the economic front, while in office.

    However, can you respond to the above headline? I have read and referred previously to your first words on hearing that Lasantha had been shot, to the effect, ” Koheda Vadunne ?” ( Where did it strike?).

    What is the link between the above referred phone calls and your words?

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

    • 4
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      Rajasingham,

      You are now jumping the band wagon – just so as to hide your own past singing hosannas and appealing for funds in support of this same rascal, right?

      If you are sincere and have some integrity left, and not playing third-rate politics, you would first apologize for your erratic ways of the past – not try to bury them by feigning new-found resentment every chance you get for your once-idolized hero.

  • 12
    2

    Medamulana Meehark Machivellalan Mahinda are these your comments or it was written for you by Phony Political scientist Dayan J, GL Pieris, Cabraal or 2500/= Bandula Gunawardena.

  • 9
    2

    In 2009 (from what I remember) VAT was 20% for certain products/services and 15% for the rest. No businessman dared to protest and all members now in the JO heartily endorsed it.

    Having said that, I hope that one day a simplified (and fair) taxation scheme can be implemented. Submitting monthly and quarterly VAT returns for any Company has now become a huge burden with the info requested by the IRD to be incorporated therein.

  • 6
    1

    I am not fan of this regime or the VAT scheme introduced equally corrupt Karunanayake and Ranil.
    Mahendra Percy Rajapaksa, just keep QUITE. You provided the right political leadership to defeat LTTE. I BOW and THANK you for that. End of your story. But you and your family abused the goodwill of people of Sri Lanka, alleged to have stolen unbelievable amount of assets belonging to the people. Do you know the punishment. According to Buddhism; -STEALING THE WEALTH OF PEOPLE IS EQUIVALENT TO STEALING FROM THE BEGGING BOWL OF LORD BUDDHA-It is a major sin that you cannot escape easily. Just go away, take a holiday and engage in religious activities that will help you to wash away major sins committed by your inner circle.
    People will deal with Ranil and his batch of sinners appropriately.

  • 6
    1

    Lo and behold! Dewadaththaya is preaching Buddhism!The only Soothra his family knows and practices is Mahaa Kanta Soothra!

  • 3
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    Humble request to all Muslim Parliamentarians and Ministers to oppose the VAT bill on August 11th., in the parliament. While the general public is severely burdened by this VAT taxation and the price increase of consumer goods, the Muslims who are traditionally traders and small boutique owners/businessmen have been affected to the extreme. Therefore the Muslim Parliamentarians and Ministers should vote against this VAT bill.
    Noor Nizam. Peace and Political Activist, Political Communication Researcher, SLFP Stalwart and Convener – The Muslim Voice.

    • 8
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      NIZAM:

      What you are doing is really wrong, by supporting a politician who destroyed the copuntry.

      You are worse than the Wahabis or salafis.

    • 5
      1

      A Muslim Voice you say??? On whose behalf??? You don’t talk like a Muslim…

      • 5
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        Have you guys forgotten who the Sri Lankan Muslims area; , We the SINHALA-BUDDHIST PEOPLE understand Muslim community is nothing but a “MONSTER WITH TWO HEADS”. Even Muslims from Thihariya joined the PADA YAATRA of Mahinda Rajapaksa. When MR was in power, Hakeem, Azath Sally, Mustafa, Abu Sally, This Baker and That Baker enjoyed MR’s hospitality and participated in all sinful activities. Now the same lot is with Ranil and Maithri. These are the characteristics of the “MONSTER WITH TWO HEADS”.

  • 6
    1

    MaRa, You are a defeated candidate, why in the world Srilankans have to listen to a lose?

  • 7
    0

    Every where in the world, there is taxation on what is consumed. So, if the VAT bill is about taxing on what is consumed, that is just keeping up with the world. Mahinda Rajapakse’s goal is to destabilize the govt. So, he tries to mislead the public.

    If Mahinda Rajapakse wants really to help sri lankans there are other things he can do.

    Mahinda Rajapakse’s goal is to show him that he is powerful and he still has power. Then he can get FCID to go away from his family and children.

    Saying NO to the VAT bill is not the answer.

  • 10
    0

    Can’t someone shut this scoundrel up. Criminal stole and pillaged this country into deep debt and now he is one to talk? The new government is trying to flatten the debts this bastard left behind.

  • 6
    0

    Hey MaRa… Open you damn eyes and read what Citizens say, oh damn, you can’t read nor speak English… But hopefully you will have some idiot like your son translate…

    MaRa – starting from the mid 80s, you had a couple of murders on your hands, and your helper and pimp was the UN-honorable Mervin Silva… By the way, where is your daughter off Mervin’s wife?? In Aussie…. Mervin was pimp to another Honorable SLFP member – May he rest in Peace…

    You say you love Sri Lanka and its people, it that why you stole the Tsunami Funds that was meant for them??? You needed money for the Elections and you heartlessly took the poor affected peoples… Chandrika was about to hang you for this, but you won the election – again by Fraud!!!

    People know the rest, they saw what a Racist Criminal you really are… You talk about Vat??? Hey monkeyface – we are paying your damn loans!!! You and your family will pay for this – the sentence might be a little lenient if you retuned all the stolen money that belongs to us – like you returned the Tsunami Funds…

    Cheers

  • 1
    4

    Gosh! It’s terrible to squeeze the local small business owners this way. Just imagine our beloved local industries like Green Cabin chocolatiers, and the local kade selling bull-toe, screeching to a halt. GoSL should be giving them extra incentive and not taxing them. Instead, all the hard work of the masses that result in the popular and much-loved cultural aspects of our society are going into futuristic stocks and bonds of the Indian aspiration (besides also going to the Yahapalanaya payees).

  • 6
    0

    Someone should whack this menace off this planet. His grin is enough for me to puke.

  • 0
    0

    why do you want to come back to power is for the love of the land & it’s people or for something else..?

  • 0
    0

    Dear MR: On 4th August, you call all the MPs to vote against the VAT Bill that is to be presented to Parliament on 11th. You are now leaving Sri Lanka with some noted “Rogues” to Korea. When do you hope to return and meet all the MPs to get their support for your call? What is your “Priority”? Is it the Peoples’ suffering with VAT increase OR your foreign trip? Also on “WHOSE” advice you are leaving the country at a time when this VAT “Bombshell” is to be brought before the Parliament? We know what you are up to and what type of “Deals” are in the making. What if you could have organized that “Final Pada Yathra” on 11th August, the day the VAT Bill is due to be presented in Parliament?

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