The Excise Department has expressed its objection to the Finance Ministry’s attempt of fusing several income taxes as Special Goods and Service Tax and taking them over.
Speaking to media, Secretary of the All Ceylon Association of Excise Sergeants and Regulators W.M. Ranura Najith Singh stated that attempts were made to set up a revenue authority in 2002 and 2016 and that the current Special Goods and Services Tax seems to be one of its facets.
The Excise Department, the Customs Department and the Inland Revenue Department are the main sources of government revenue and the special tax introduced by the Ministry will stop the collection of revenue from these departments.
These departments, nevertheless, went on alleging that there is no clarity regarding the receipt of revenue to the Consolidated Revenue Fund through this new tax.
The Excise Department managed to collect over Rs. 140 billion of taxes during the Covid-19 pandemic last year, making it the highest amount of tax revenue in the history of the Department, Singh said.
In the backdrop, introduction of such tax policies would be problematic, he noted.
Revealing that discussions have been requested from the President, the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister in this regard, Singh warned that attention would be drawn to take trade union actions, should the government fail to listen to the voices of the trade unions.
Meanwhile, the trade unions of the Inland Revenue Department have also expressed their objection against this new tax scheme.