Sri Lanka raises taxes on dubbed foreign movies, dramas and commercial shows

The Sri Lankan government has increased the levy charged on dubbed foreign movies, dramas and commercials with immediate effect.

The charges have been raised in response to a request made to the Minister of Finance and Mass Media Mangala Samaraweera by organizations and the producers of local tele dramas and movies

Since some of the foreign tele dramas and commercial programs being broadcast in the country include content that is contrary to local traditions, the artists and media personnel have requested the Minister to take steps to minimize the damage to Sri Lankan culture and arts, the Finance Ministry said.

Accordingly, the three gazette notifications issued under the 2006 Finance Act No. 11 of 2006 for tele-dramas, films and commercial programs have been canceled with effect from midnight today. And Minister Mangala Samaraweera has decided to issue a new gazette notice valid from midnight today.

According to the new charges, the present fee of Rs. 90,000 charged for a program dubbed in Sinhala or Tamil which has a duration of 30 minutes and spreads over not more than 4 series, will be increased to Rs. 150,000.

However, if the programs are telecast in the original form, without being dubbed, the tax will not be applicable.