Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Top Real Estate Broker Admits Dodging Taxes

The Sunday Leader has uncovered shocking new evidence of how expatriate-owned real estate brokers help foreigners buy valuable property on the island without paying the mandatory 100 percent transfer tax that was enacted in 2005. Over the past decade, foreigners have bought up massive swaths of Sri Lankan beachfront property, displacing local inhabitants and inflating real estate prices to unprecedented levels.
Most foreigners buy the property as an investment, hoping to re-sell it later for a hefty profit. The most valuable and hotly-traded property is located around Galle, from Bentota to Matara, but numerous expat-owned real estate brokers also offer beachfront property around Trincomalee, Arugam Bay, Tangalle and Puttalam. With numerous real estate companies taking advantage of a tax loophole to quickly sell off land to outside investors, the government appears content to let foreigners buy up the island from under its very nose.
Source: Sunday Leader

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