Association of Laminated Packaging Manufacturers raises concern over 2018 Budget

Wednesday, 15 November 2017 00:21 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • Warns increased tax on packaging raw material falls short of being environment-friendly and only burdens the end consumer

Sri Lanka Laminated Flexible Packaging Manufacturers’ Association  in a media statement yesterday about the tax increase on packaging raw materials under the proposed budget, says that the tax increase will only have a negative impact on the public who are the end consumers of packaged product. 

They state that it will fall short of being a sustainable solution to reduce the usage of polythene. Under the proposed budget for 2018, an import tax of Rs.10 was levied for every Kilogram of plastic resin. 

“The budget is portrayed as an environment-friendly budget; with measures targeted in that direction. However, in reality, these measures only burden the public in the form of increased product prices. Sri Lanka still does not have a sustainable solution to recycle garbage. Although many are trying quick fixes to solve this problem, their efforts are proving to be futile. The country needs a far-sighted program and not a short-term fix and the leadership responsible must be committed to such a program instead of a short term solution. Far-sighted programs need time, planning and patience. Taxation under the ‘green economy’ is only a bigger burden to the end consumers,” said the Spokesperson of the Sri Lanka Laminated Flexible Packaging Manufacturers Association. 

The Association says that this taxation will have a ripple effect and hit multiple industries that are depending on the services of the packaging industry and eventually the end consumer. According to the Packaging Manufacturers’ Association, the current tax increase comes into effect on top of many other challenges already faced by the industry. While the prices of raw materials have been continuously on the rise over the past, the depreciating value of the Sri Lankan rupee, high cost of electricity and high bank interest rates have put the industry in a difficult situation.

“Waste management and recycling are the responsibilities of the government. Eluding these responsibilities and imposing taxes in the guise of eco-friendly solutions is not a viable proposition to the larger issue. Tax revenues collected in the past on packaging raw materials have not been utilized to find a sustainable solution to the problem. We urge the government to analyze all different aspects of the problem and reconsider these proposed taxations as these do not provide a real solution,” the spokesperson further added.