Sri Lanka Chamber of Small and Medium Industries (SLCSMI) President Rohan De Silva on behalf of all the members of the chamber conveyed his heartiest congratulations to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on his being elected as the seventh Executive President of Sri Lanka.
In a letter he said, “The massive and unprecedented number of votes and the majority you received at the election clearly indicate that the people of our country have placed their trust and confidence in you to revive the country out of the present situation. We extend our fullest co-operation and support in all your efforts and actions in achieving prosperity, sustenance and peace to the people of our nation.”
De Silva said the election manifesto of President Rajapaksa highlights many of the urgent economic policies and reforms that are much to rescue the ailing economy and revive the local micro, small and medium industrial sector that is almost on the verge of collapsing.
He said the following steps are most welcome by the sector:
-A simple VAT of 8 percent, replacing the current 15 percent +2 percent NBT.
-A five-year moratorium on taxes payable by agriculturists and small and medium enterprises.
-Increase in import tariff on goods competing with locally-produced substitutes.
-Zero VAT scheme for businesses providing services to tourist hotels, if more than 60 percent of the requirements are purchased locally.
-A clear and simplified tax system.
-PAYE tax to be scrapped and personal income to be subject to a minimum of 15 percent.
The SLCSMI is happy to note that the above proposals have already been approved and implemented by President Rajapaksa at the first Cabinet meeting of the new government, which will add a flip to the national economy and help in easing the burdens faced by the micro, small and medium industry sector, which contributes 70 percent to GDP and its employees constituting over 40 percent of the national workforce.