‘Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2012′ e-book released

An e-book of the ‘Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2012’ containing summary information and visuals of the 7 key chapters is now available for free download. This e-book also contains links to a video presentation of the main highlights of the report.

Sri Lanka as a Rice Exporting Country: Possibilities and Problems

The Budget 2012 presented last month touches on agriculture at several points. However, the proposal to establish “four rice export zones” stands out as the most provocative, in an economic sense, amongst all of them. Sri Lanka has just achieved near self-sufficiency in rice. But the rice sector, including both production and consumption, is still plagued with a multitude of economic and social problems. Against this backdrop, a proposal to commit resources to promote rice export raises a number of questions ranging from “is it possible” to “at what cost and for whose benefit”. This article seeks to take a deeper look into this complex issue.

SMEs and Budget 2012: Strong Steps, but Tax Relief is Half the Story

Yes, tax concessions are a vital component in the SME-strengthening effort, and the Budget 2012 has much to offer for SMEs. But tax concessions should not be thought of as the panacea for the struggles of Sri Lanka’s SMEs. Other issues are often equally constraining, and more needs to be done about them. Ministry of Finance has delivered; it is now time for SME-mandated government institutions to sharpen their focus and address the vital issues

Making Public Servants Liable for PAYE Tax: Ending the Exclusive Exemption, but what Implications for Revenue?

> by Anushka Wijesinha* and Nethmini Perera (Research Officers – IPS) • Extending PAYE (Pay As You Earn) tax to public employees can raise revenue by 23%, but simultaneous raising of the tax free threshold drops revenue by 40%• Yet, …

Better Targeting of Transfers: The Fertilizer Subsidy

By Manoj Tibbotuwawa, Research Officer – IPS Credit Sanjeewa Siriwardana The second article in the “Fiscal Imperatives” series deals with another contentious transfer programme, the fertilizer subsidy. In 2009, the fertilizer subsidy accounted for 3% of total government expenditure and …