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Thursday, 10 November 2016 - 18:48
Price of LPG Gas, Kerosene, Dhal, Sugar, Green Gram, Potatoes and sprats reduced

Samurdhi to be renamed Jana IsuruFree tablet computers to advance level students and teachers.

Insurance coverage for every school student.

 Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake presented Budget 2017 in parliament this afternoon.

It is the 70th budget of Sri Lanka and the 2nd budget by the National Unity Governmen
Finance Minister who commenced the budget speech at 2.03 pm today continued till 5:08 pm.

President Maithripala Sirisena also arrived in the chambers while the budget was being presented.

Starting his budget speech, Finance Minister Karunanayake said that the aim of the government is to achieve a 7% economic growth next year.

He said that it’s the first time in history of budget preparation; public proposals were gathered for the budget.

Budget 2017 has proposed to reduce prices of LP Gas by 25 rupees, a kilogram of sugar by 2 rupees, a kilogram of dhal by 10 rupees and a kilogram of green gram by 15 rupees.

In addition, prices of a kilogram of sprats and potatoes will be reduced by 5 rupees.

At the same time, the Finance Minister proposed to rename Samurdhi Movement as Jana Isuru.

A proposal was also made to introduce a housing project with 500 thousand units for the milled class families.

Minister Karunanayake stated in his budget speech that agricultural sector has been given priority this time thereby granting subsidized loans for fruit and vegetable farmers.

With the view to protect local producers, 2% cess was imposed on imported sugar while 5% cess imposed on ethanol.  15,000 milch cows will be imported and distributed at least among each farmer.

At the same time, plantation companies are limited to obtain a maximum of 5000 acres, and the minister said that tax on tea industry will be eased out.

He also said that 900 million rupees will be allocated for rubber plantation development and decided to maintain the current price of a locally manufactured packet of 400 gram powered milk.

The minister said that additional grants of 17.84 billion rupees have been allocated for education.

At the same time, Finance minister said that 175 thousand A/L students and their teachers will be provided free computer tablets in 2017.

He further stated that an insurance coverage of 200 thousand rupees will be introduced for each student between the ages 5 to 19.

Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake proposed to encourage the use of electric cars instead of three wheelers.

In addition Budget 2017 proposed to lift the existing 25% Cess on construction industry and to list hotels Colombo Grand Hyatt, Grand Oriental, Waters Edge, Hilton Hambantota and Mannar Salterns on Colombo Stock Exchange to earn 1000 million rupees to government coffers.

The minister also proposed to rename Samurdhi Movement as Jana Isuru.

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