President Ranil Wickremesinghe has deemed the recent tax revisions a ‘rescue operation.’
Delivering the keynote speech at the Tax Forum 2023 yesterday (21), he said “This is not a normal taxation exercise. It’s a rescue operation.
With regard to the bailout Sri Lanka currently awaits from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), he noted that no other party, person or institution proposed any alternative options to the IMF.
“Only the Chamber of Commerce suggested alternatives”, he said.
The forum was organized by the Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM).
President Wickremesinghe noted that if this process is disrupted, Sri Lanka will not be able to join the IMF programme and may lose the opportunity to do business with foreign countries.
Once an agreement is reached with the IMF, it will be presented to Parliament and it will have the option to pass or reject it.
If the proposal is rejected, the relevant parties should submit alternative proposals to the IMF, he added.
Commenting on the debt restructuring process with the main creditors of Sri Lanka, the Paris Club, India and China, the president said the Paris Club has guaranteed its financial support for Sri Lanka, and India is following its own method, but China has not expressed agreement about its method so far.
President Wickremesinghe mentioned that their stand will be announced at the G-20 Finance Ministers’ meeting on February 23 in Bangalore, India.