Minister of Labour Nimal Siripala de Silva says the government is sensitive to the issues faced by the country’s working class.
Speaking during the opening ceremony of the Labour Office in Ja-Ela the Minister said the government was as result able to remove the Employees Provident Fund from the Tax Surcharge Bill.
He noted that many are unaware that the Labour Department provides a commendable service.
The Minister stated there was controversy surrounding the Employees Provident Fund in recent days adding Rs.35 billion of the EPF is paid as income tax.
He added the EPF falls under the definition of a company in the Tax Surcharge Bill and therefore the country’s working-class feared Rs.78 billion of the EPF will go to the Treasury as a result of a 25 percent surcharge being levied on the EPF.
Minister de Silva said he opposed the 25 percent surcharge being levied on the EPF and told the working class who took to the streets against the move that the government will listen to them.
The Labour Minister said following lengthy discussions the Minister of Finance agreed to ensure the EPF and the Employees Trust Fund are not affected by the Tax Surcharge Bill.