The Sri Lankan smartphone market has shrunk due to import restrictions imposed by the government.
Mobile phone sellers and businessmen say the price of smartphones has dropped to at least Rs. 80,000 as the government raises taxes.
The Ministry of Finance imposed a surcharge on several imported goods on the 1st. In addition, VAT has been increased by 4% as a measure to increase government revenue. This increase in taxes will eventually lead to higher prices.
People feel the rising cost of services that are essential for everyday activities such as online classes, online shopping and e-payment to deliver call messages. Merchants say the average smartphone is now priced at Rs. 55,000 or Rs. 60,000 and shortly the price of a phone will be Rs. 80,000 or Rs. 90,000.
Merchants also said that consumers tend not to buy when informed of prices. The government has also increased the telecommunication tax from 11.25% to 15%. Telephone call charges have risen. In addition, the increase in VAT from 8 per cent to 12 per cent will increase telephone bill charges.
With the 4 per cent increase in VAT, internet service charges by telephone service providers have also been increased. In addition, mobile phone monthly package tariffs and satellite TV package tariffs have been increased.