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2nd reading debate of VAT & IR Bills on Dec. 9

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The Secretary General of the Parliament, Mr. Dhammika Dasanayake said that it was decided to hold the debate on the Second Reading of the Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill and Inland Revenue (Amendment) Bills on December 09th. This was decided at the Committee on Parliamentary Business held today (25) under the chairmanship of Speaker – Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana.

Accordingly, The Secretary General stated that time is allotted from 9.30 am to 10.30 am for Questions for Oral Answers on the 9th, and from 10.30 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. the said Bills are scheduled to be taken up for debate. Furthermore, the Motion at the Adjournment Time by the Government is scheduled from 5.00 p.m. – 5.30 p.m on the same day.

The entire day on December 09th was reserved for Questions for Oral Answers previously. However, it was decided to hold it on December 10th.

Furthermore, the Secretary General added that post the committee stage debate on the Appropriation Bill 2023 scheduled on the 30th, the Second Reading of the Appropriation (Amendment) Bill related to the fiscal year 2022 and the Resolution under the Local Treasury Bills Ordinance are to be presented in Parliament for approval.

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India relaxes onion export ban for Sri Lanka and UAE

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India has lifted its ban on onion exports, permitting the shipment of 10,000 metric tonnes to Sri Lanka, announced the Indian High Commission in Colombo. 

This move, aligned with India’s Neighbourhood First policy, aims to support Sri Lanka during its Sinhala and Tamil New Year celebrations.

The decision comes as a relief for Sri Lanka, where onion prices surged following export bans imposed by both India and Pakistan.

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade has issued a gazette notice granting permission to National Co-operative Exports Limited for the export of 10,000 MT of onions to Sri Lanka.

Furthermore, the UAE has been granted permission to import an additional 10,000 MT of onions, in addition to the 24,400 MT already permitted. This decision is significant given the substantial Indian and South Asian expat community residing in the UAE.

The relevant gazette notification is given below.

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Expressways generate whopping income during Avurudu season

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The expressways have generated an income of Rs. 159,802,950 from April 10 – 13, Road Development Authority (RDA) says.

According to the Director of Expressway Operation Maintenance and Management Division – R.A.D. Kahatapitiya.

Over 4,350,000 vehicles have used the expressways during this period, he has added.
As many as 366,000 vehicles have used the expressways during this three-day period.

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Special transport arrangements to those returning to Colombo

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Special train services are in operation from this evening (April 14) for people to return to Colombo after the Sinhala and Tamil New Year holidays, the Railways Department said.

Deputy General Manager of Sri Lanka Railways –  N.J. Indipolage stated that accordingly, eight additional train journeys will be in operation from Badulla, Galle and Beliatta railway stations to Colombo Fort.

The Department of Railways also mentioned that the office trains will be operational as per usual from April 16.

Meanwhile, the National Transport Commission has said that special buses will be deployed to transport those who had gone to their hometowns during the New Year.
Bus associations have also stated that buses to Colombo will be operational.

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