Budget 2018

9 November 2017 - 2999   - 0

05:46 PM
Budget speech took 2.43 hours, exceeding the earlier planned 90-minute (shortest in history) speech by more than an hour.
05:44 PM
Minister winds up budget speech.
05:41 PM
SMS ads - 20 cents tax per message
05:39 PM
Liquor tax to be introduced
05:39 PM
Sale of imported cigarettes and cigars under new licence scheme
05:37 PM
loan repayment tax of 20 cents for every Rs 1000 transaction enforced for three years.
05:36 PM
Rs 1.9 trillion has to be paid as debt payments this year.
05:35 PM
Fair price shops to be established with the joint support of the government and the private sector
05:34 PM
MInister appeals to trade to pass the benefits of a series of reduced taxes on essential goods to consumers
05:31 PM
Office of Missing Persons to start this year.
05:30 PM
Concessions for companies who employ former war combatants in the North.
05:27 PM
Improve livelihoods of those in war-affected areas with Rs 750 million allocation. 
05:25 PM
Special home for differently-abled women in the North
05:22 PM
Child care service for public servants
05:21 PM
Common payment system for public servants
05:20 PM
National religious shrines and temples of archaeological significance for all religions to be renovated.
05:19 PM
Emergency medical insurance for artistes
05:18 PM
Racecourse building at Independence Square to be transformed to a design and handicrafts centre
05:17 PM
6 banks, DFIBs and 3 state banks facing capital pressures.Bank of Ceylon and People's to raise debt and equity capital.
05:14 PM
Capital Markets: Divest holdings in non strategic state enterprises
05:13 PM
NBT imposed on liquor from midnight tonight
05:10 PM
Police Crimes university to be established
05:01 PM
HIV Aids unit to be established at National Hospital Colombo
04:58 PM
Production tax  on sweetened drinks at 50 cents per gramme of sugar content from midnight tonight
04:55 PM
Import tax on sports shoes removed with effect at midnight tonight
04:52 PM
100 new rural playgrounds
04:51 PM
Post graduate institute for indigenous medicine
04:51 PM
Budget speech now more than 90 minutes and crosses the planned 90 minute speech
04:49 PM
Medical faculties at Moratuwa, Wayamba and Sabaragamuwa universities
04:47 PM
English language trainng unit to be set up at Maharagam Teacher Training College
04:44 PM
Rs. 325 billion allocated for education development
04:43 PM
Five more technical institutes to be established in Badulla, Ratnapura and Anuradhapura with Swedish support In addition to already set up ones.
04:40 PM
Student unable to enter local universities or pay to study abroad will provided vocational training.
National universities to have market oriented courses
04:38 PM
Its no fault of A level students being unable to enter local universities. It is the fault of the system
04:36 PM
PPP guidelines for several sectors to introduced
04:33 PM
Foreigners to be allowed to acquire apartments below the 3rd floor in a condo
04:33 PM
Tourist tuk tuks to be encouraged under Tourism Board tul-tuk scheme. Three wheeler drivers can registed for training as tourist guides
04:31 PM
Street festivals and Sri Lanka food fests in New York, London and Mumbai next year
04:30 PM
Domestic airports developed as PPPs for tourism and aero sports, hand gliding, parachuting and paragliding to be encouraged.
04:29 PM
Some railway stations like Nanu Oya and Ella to be declared as archaelogical sites and encouraged for tourism
04:26 PM
1% tax on OTAs in travel industry
04:25 PM
All tourism providers to be registered by the authorities
04:25 PM
Tourism: Home stays to be encouraged to meet shortfall of rooms
04:23 PM
NBT removed on gem imports
04:23 PM
Flower Council to be established to help horticulture industry
04:21 PM
NBT (tax) on coconut products removed
04:20 PM
Nautical tourism with standardisation and quality assurance to be established. Yacht sales to receive tax concessions
04:19 PM
Product design engineering through megatronics development to be supported
04:17 PM
Innovation to be encouraged with state support
04:16 PM
Sri Lanka Ports Authority Act and Merchant Shipping Act to be changed
04:15 PM
Sri Lanka Standards Institute and national quarantine to be upgraded to be on par with international standards
04:11 PM
Moratuwa and Colombo universities and SLIIT to host AI, robotics, etc
04:09 PM
Angel fund to be initiated in IT sector to help start-ups and incubators.
04:08 PM
150 new ventures to be set up with at least 10 shareholders (each) infusing at least Rs. 10,000 as capital. Govt to provide Rs. 500 million.
04:07 PM
Start-up loans schemes to be continued
04:06 PM
Differenly able people and women entreprenuers to be given concessional loans
04:04 PM
Enterprise Sri Lanka loans scheme to obtain loans for SME sector
04:04 PM
Import and export development bank for loans for the SME sector. No collateral but loan based on project viability
04:01 PM
Social security network to protect small entrepreneurs
04:00 PM
Enterprise Sri Lanka to transform economy, lives
03:59 PM
Priority for enterprise development in the economy
03:57 PM
Fisheries harbours to be renovated
03:56 PM
Govt. will bear 50 % of the cost of accessories for multi day fishing boats
03:54 PM
Sum of Rs. 40,000 insurance payment per acre by the state for six varieties of vegetables
03:52 PM
Rainwater harvesting to be encouraged in some districts with Rs 1 billion allocation
03:50 PM
Virtual blue-green institute to be established
03:49 PM
Coastal erosion and coastal pollution eradication for the benefit of tourism and fisheries industries
03:47 PM
Telecom towers to be consolidated. A charge of Rs. 2 per call to be charged to the users of the towers.
03:45 PM
Research centre to study species at Pinnawela zoo environment
03:45 PM
Dehiwela and Pinnawala zoos to be transformed to open zoos and animal friendly.
03:44 PM
Jogging tracks, exercise venues, roof gardens as part of the green economy to launched across the country
03:40 PM
Environmentally friendly wrapping encouraged.
03:39 PM
New vehicle taxes per day: 
- motor cycle tax  17 cents
- private buses  Rs 2.75
- car Rs 1.78
03:37 PM
Vehicles without airbags banned
03:36 PM
State buses too would be transformed to "green' vehicles.  50 electric buses to be launched.
03:36 PM
Electric 3 wheelers will be encouraged
03:34 PM
New luxury tax to be introduced for super--luxury vehicles
03:34 PM
Import taxes on electric 3 wheelers and electric buses reduced while tax concessions for other categories too

03:32 PM
By 2025 all state vehicles to transform to hybrid or electric vehicles
03:31 PM
By 2040 all existing vehicles will be 'green'
03:31 PM
Laws to allow flexi hours for workers soon
03:30 PM
Blue-green economic programme to be initiated
03:29 PM
Proposed to amend Rent Act, Shop and Office Act and change bankruptcy laws
03:28 PM
Most laws are archaic just like the1869 Customs Ordinance which need to change
03:27 PM
Budget targets a capital account surplus
03:26 PM
Budget based on UN sustainable development targets and aimed at creating a green economy
03:25 PM
"Green enterprise" the theme of the 2018 budget
03:24 PM
The Finance Minister now begins to prepare the budget proposals after the economic review.
03:23 PM
Labour market reforms to be considered
03:23 PM
Vision 2020 economic reforms will be introduced where property rights will be ensured and capital market reforms introduced
03:21 PM
Unemployment to be contained at 4 % (of workforce)
03:20 PM
Budget deficit to be reduced to 3.5% of GDP in 2020
03:19 PM
Government targets revenue at 20% of GDP
03:17 PM
Last year's drought and climate change accounted for a loss of 1 per cent of GDP
03:16 PM
Samaraweera praises the former Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake for good debt management and turning around the economy.
03:08 PM
Finance Minister Samaraweera walks in and begins his maiden budget speech and probably the shortest speech in budget history. The speech is scheduled to end at 4.30 pm.
03:07 PM
Disruption in the house after opposition MP Dinesh Gunawardene protests over alleged attempt to bar them to come to parliament in unorthodox transportation - bullock carts and push cycles.
03:03 PM
Parliament opens for sittings. Speaker Karu Jayasuriya in the chair, reads out announcements
02:55 PM
Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera seen walking in the corridors of Parliament to present the country's 72nd budget for the year 2018, at 3 pm

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