The Value Added Tax (VAT) Bill was passed in Parliament this evening with a majority of 66 votes. A total of 112 voted in favour of the Bill, while 46 voted against it and 65 MPs abstained from voting.
Accordingly, the public will now be compelled to pay a further 4% tax, from the existing 11% VAT.
The 15% tax increase will be charged on all private health services other than diagnostic tests, dialysis and OPD services. The tax will also be slapped on all telecommunication services, tobacco products, powdered milk which contains added sugar or other sweeteners as well as on air tickets.
Yesterday, the Supreme Court announced that the amended VAT bill which was presented early this month was in accordance to the Constitution. The amended VAT bill was presented in parliament early this month for a second time, after the Supreme Court ruled that the first time the bill was presented, it was not in accordance to the Constitution.