The expansion of the tax net and reduction of prices of ten essential commodities will be among the main proposals of The ‘Budget 2016’ to be presented in Parliament by Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayaka tomorrow, a senior Cabinet Minister disclosed today.
Special Assignments Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama told the media that the first budget speech of the UNP led consensual government would be a development, investment, revenue growth and relief oriented one with the target to achieve an accelerated GDP growth in the next five years.
“It is a known fact that government’s tax revenue is inadequate and the tax collection mechanism is weak. Therefore, the budget 2016 will focus its attention to expand the tax net further to include more effluent and taxable people into the government’s tax system. However, I assure you that the reformed tax regime will not affect the poorer section of the society,” Minister Amunugama stressed.
Minister Amunugama said the government tax collection through 30 tax regimes was inadequate and sufficient to meet only the recurrent expenditure.
The government is to increase budgetary allocations for social welfare health, education and in addition to capital for various government development projects. That is why the government is compelled to increase tax revenue and up the bar on taxable people.
Minister Amunugama without elaborating said the budget 2016 would also lower the prices of ten essential commodities in the similar manner the government did by bringing down the prices of 13 consumer goods including power tariff and bus fares from the mini budget in January 29 by lifting tax on them. (Sandun A. Jayasekera)