The Sri Lankan High Commission in the UK has unpaid congestion charges and outstanding National Non-Domestic Rates (NNDR) worth pound sterling (£) 371,003, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Jeremy Hunt said.
In a written statement to the UK Parliament last Tuesday, Mr. Hunt said they have held meetings with diplomatic missions and international organisations about outstanding parking fine debts, outstanding NNDR payments and unpaid congestion charge debt.
He said Foreign and Cmmonwealth Affairs (FCO) officials also press diplomatic missions and international organisations to pay outstanding fines and debts. “The majority of diplomatic missions in the UK pay the NNDR due from them.
Diplomatic missions and international organisations are obliged to pay only 6% of the total NNDR value of their offices. This represents payment for specific services received such as street cleaning and street lighting.
As at September 20, 2018, the total amount of outstanding NNDR payments owed by foreign diplomatic missions and international organisations due before 31 December 2017 is £ 1,507,576,” the statement said.
Accordingly, the Sri Lankan High Commission has an outstanding NNDR payment of £ 26,278 and £ 344,725 as unpaid congestion charges.
It was reported that the value of unpaid congestion charge debt incurred by diplomatic missions and international organisations in London was £ 110,069,300. According to the statement, the US Embassy has an outstanding payment of £ 11,925,920 as congestion charges, Embassy of Japan £ 8,021,190, Nigerian High Commission £ 6,724,405, Russian Embassy £ 5,653,955, Indian High Commission £ 5,394,580, German Embassy £ 4,288,680 and the Chinese Embassy £ 4,337,295. (Lahiru Pothmulla)