Sri Lanka adopts casino incentives


Parliament passed a package of tax incentive for casino investment after overcoming opposition that reached the governing coalition and a legal challenge.  Patali Champika Ranawaka, general secretary of the Jathika Hela Urumaya, a Buddhist party, and minister for technology, research and atomic energy, said Sri Lanka did not need casinos to promote tourism given its natural and cultural heritage. The party said casinos go against the state religion of Buddhism. Other ministers however insisted there are no plans for more casinos despite the incentives  and recent meetings with Crown Ltd. Chairman James Packer.  Sarath Amunugama, minister of international monetary co-operation however insisted “we have no plans of expanding [casinos] further”. Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena, minister of investment promotion, clarified, “we are inviting only hotel projects.”