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SLAAJ urges government to maintain import duty for two years
[11 May, 2018]

SLAAJ urges government to maintain import duty for two yearsThe Sri Lanka Automobile Association in Japan (SLAAJ) urged the government to maintain the country’s import duty at least for two years so as to stabilise the local vehicle market.

SLAAJ President Nishantha Meegalla told the Daily News that the tax imposed on vehicle importation should be sustained at least for two years in order to avoid importing unnecessary numbers of vehicles, especially during the latter part of the year in which the budget is presented.

He added that vehicle export from Japan had increased by the threefold during this period since the people tend to buy vehicles from for pre-budget prices, while hoping for the tax hikes. This situation results in the outflow of millions of foreign exchange. Addressing various issues faced by the Sri Lankan customers, Meegala said that customers should purchase vehicles only exported by the SLAAJ, adding that the SLAAJ was responsible for the standards of all vehicles imported through their stakeholders. He said the SLAAJ consist of 40 executive members and 100 registered members.

According to him, vehicles imported through the SLAAJ could be identified by a specific sticker on the vehicles’ windscreen which symbolises their quality.

Meegalla said that over 2,000 people were directly involved in the automobile market, but the uncertainty of tax rates affects their job security.

The SLAAJ would conduct two-day seminar and workshop in Sri Lanka, to make public aware on all sectors of vehicles purchasing. The event would be held on October 5 to 6 in Colombo, with the participation of Japanese authorities.