By Hiran H.Senewiratne
The government is not receiving ample tax revenue to its coffers from the current tax system/structure and the proposed amendment to the 2017 Inland Revenue Act would simplify it and make it more efficient and effective when collecting revenue for the country, Secretary to the President Dr. P.B Jayasundera said at a forum.
” The country’s tax system should be driven by new technology and the Inland Revenue Department online payment system will serve the people in an efficient and effective manner within a little time. Technology driven tax payment systems prevent unnecessary expenditure and time for taxpayers and also the tax collector as well, Jayasundera said at a taxpayer awareness programme, organised by the Inland Revenue Department. The event was held at the Hilton Hotel, yesterday
‘Under the government’s National Policy Framework Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour, the proposed amendment to the Inland Revenue Act will create an environment to encourage taxpayers to pay taxes without evading, he said
‘For the first time in the history, The Inland Revenue Department, Sri Lanka Customs and Excise Department would be involved in increasing and improving national productivity, which most of the time acted as only revenue collectors, he said.
Dr Jayasundera said that currently there are only 20 percent e- files in the country but with the new amendment to the Inland Revenue Act they could be increased 100 percent with the introduction of new technology that would enable taxpayers to pay taxes through electronic devices.
” We are not happy when we look at the global ‘Doing Business Index’, because Sri Lanka’s revenue collection system is neither efficient nor effective nor simple. The simplified tax system would enable to create some attitudinal change for tax payers in the country,”he said.
He said that the legal system, tax administration and new technology should work together to reap real benefits for the country and the tax payers, which will assist to increase revenue at a considerable level. ‘Therefore, 80 percent tax revenue collected from 20 percent of tax paying people, could be increased to 90 percent or 95 percent with a simplified ,efficient and effective system, Jayasundera said.
HNB supports Sri Lanka Welfare Society of Blind Women
Supporting the livelihoods of visually impaired women, Sri Lanka’s most customer friendly bank HNB PLC donated 300 white canes and dry ration packs to the members of the Sri Lanka Welfare Society of the Blind Women.
The donations made utilizing voluntary contributions gathered by HNB employees, were handed over to members of the Society at a special event at HNB Towers under the patronage of HNB Managing Director and CEO Jonathan Alles.
“HNB is proud to partner with the Sri Lanka Welfare Society of the Blind Women to serve the visually impaired women of the country. Our goal is to do our part in ensuring they are given opportunities, recognition and respect that are equal to every other citizen, and we hope that partnerships of this nature will pave the way for a more inclusive and caring society,” HNB Managing Director and CEO, Jonathan Alles said.
With 252 customer centres across the country, HNB is one of Sri Lanka’s largest, most technologically innovative banks, having won local and global recognition for its efforts to drive forward a new paradigm in digital banking. Over the recent past, the bank was ranked among the World Top 1,000 Banks list compiled by the prestigious UK-based Banker Magazine. HNB has a national rating of AA- (lka) by Fitch Ratings (Lanka) Ltd.
HNB was also declared Best Sub-Custodian Bank in Sri Lanka at the Global Finance Awards 2020, in addition to winning the coveted Best Retail Bank in Sri Lanka Award for the 11th time at the Asian Banker Awards 2020, in recognition of its sustainable growth and continuous improvements in processes, products and services amidst a challenging macroeconomic environment.
People’s Insurance enters Medical Insurance market with ‘the most comprehensive medical insurance cover available in Sri Lanka’
In an unprecedented effort to enhance its product offerings to customers across Sri Lanka, People’s Insurance PLC recently announced its plans to diversify into the health insurance space of the country. This strategic move to establish its presence as a health insurance provider builds on the well-established public image of People’s Insurance as the insurer who cares with love.
As the market is already heavily saturated with health insurance products offered by the competition, Peoples Insurance had the strategic objective of offering a product to make them stand out from the rest. Following a customer first approach, the insurer has decided to be a step above its competitors by offering a highly comprehensive medical insurance cover available in the country.
Citizens of Sri Lanka and those individuals who currently reside in the country are eligible to obtain a medical insurance cover from People’s Insurance. Individuals can be covered from their 5th birthday onwards. However, infants from the age of 3 months can also be protected by these covers provided that their parents have a medical cover from People’s Insurance too.
Jeevani Kariyawasam, the Head of Operations at People’s Insurance PLC commented on this new development, “When People’s Insurance PLC began to contemplate our entry into the health insurance sector, we knew we had to be different. As we are known as the only insurer who cares with love, our health insurance product had to reflect this strongly. Due to this, we decided to position ourselves as an insurance provider with a highly comprehensive product in the health insurance space. With affordable premiums, we have made every effort to ensure that Sri Lankans can enjoy the peace of mind that health insurance brings about.”
Medical schemes will vary from Rs. 100,000 to Rs. 2 million and premiums will depend on the sum insured, along with the customer’s age band. It is also noteworthy that the geographical scope of treatment extends beyond Sri Lanka and into India as well. Costs related to ambulance call outs, inpatient proceedings, surgical treatments, pharmaceuticals, diagnostics and pre and post hospitalization expenses are just a few of the areas that this comprehensive product covers.
As People’s Insurance PLC has a trusted and well established name in the minds of Sri Lankan customers, it is expected that their entrance into the medical insurance sector will be welcomed by citizens across the island. With the underlying goal of caring for its customers beyond anything else, this new development will allow for more Sri Lankans access to proper healthcare services. This decision truly resonates with a purpose beyond profit initiative.
Browns Investments purchases 9.9 percent stake in HNB, boosting market
By Hiran H. Senewiratne
CSE activities were positive but not bullish yesterday. Besides, the CSE announcement on a transaction where Browns Investments purchased a 9.9% stake in HNB plus last minute buying interest brought a positive note to the stock market, analysts said. Browns Investments bought 42 million HNB shares in the price range of Rs. 125.75 and Rs. 132.25 for RS 5.3 billion.
This quantum of shares or 9.9 % percent stake of HNB purchased by Brown Investments happened during the months of April and May, market sources said. Amid those developments both indices were positive. All Share Price Index was up by 45.85 points. Turnover stood at Rs. 890.3 million with a single crossing. The crossing is from Sampath Bank which crossed 500000 shares to the tune of RS 26 million and its shares traded at Rs. 52.
In the retail market, top five companies that mainly contributed to the turnover were, J K H RS 189 million (1.4 million shares traded), Browns Investments Rs. 181 million (27.8 million shares traded),Expo Lanka Rs. 53.8 million (1.2 million shares traded), Sampath Bank 50.2 million (1 million shares traded)and Royal ceramic Rs. 47.3 million (1.4 million shares traded). During the day 74.2 million share volume changed hands in 10600 transactions.
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