Tourist VAT Refund System at BIA | Sunday Observer

Tourist VAT Refund System at BIA

The Sri Lanka Retailers’ Association (SLRA/ www.slra.lk) member company representatives recently participated in an awareness programme conducted by the officials of the Revenue Administration Management Information System (RAMIS) Project Office of the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) to educate and promote implementation of the ‘Tourist VAT Refund Scheme’ (TVRS) at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA). TVRS will be launched initially as a pilot project by IRD on a manual system and will be graduated to a fully automated RAMIS system operated by IRD connecting on-line with Authorised Retailers in future.

The new ‘Tourist VAT Refund Scheme’ (TVRS) is introduced by the Inland Revenue Department under section 58A of the Value Added Tax Act, No. 14 of 2002 (Amended by Act) and implemented by Gazette notifications of the Commissioner General of Inland Revenue and Minister of Finance accordingly.

Foreign Tourists who purchase specified goods exceeding Rs 50,000 inclusive of VAT from Authorized Retailer outlets in Sri Lanka are eligible to claim VAT refund at the Airport as per applicable terms & conditions of the TVRS system. Eligible tourists can claim VAT refund by presenting the TVRS Tax invoice for specified goods purchased to the Custom Officer at TVRS counter and thereafter on approval encash TVRS Voucher in US dollars from the Bank of Ceylon (BOC) Transit branch at the Airport; as quoted in the presentation by the Inland Revenue officials.

This Awareness Programme presentation was under the guidance of Senior Commissioner M.J. Gunasiri, Deputy Commissioner Mahesh Ranawakarachchi and Asst. Commissioner Suresh Muhandiram. Work on theTVRS implementation is initially on a pilot manual system from the Inland Revenue Dept. connecting with the Authorized Retailer outlets and TVRS Counter at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA). 

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