The first electric vehicle import permit for migrant workers issued

(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – The first permit for the electric vehicle import license given under the newly introduced program for Sri Lankan migrant workers to import an electric vehicle when they remit money through official channels was issued yesterday (20) by the Minister of Labor and Foreign Employment Manusha Nanayakkara.

This first vehicle was brought by a Sri Lankan migrant worker who is currently working abroad and his authorized representative in Sri Lanka, Dhamma Perera received the vehicle import permit from the Minister.

The Minister noted that a special demand is being created for electric vehicle licenses and many migrant workers are continuously making inquiries about this.

Information and applications in this regard can be obtained from the website of the Ministry of Labor and Foreign Employment or the website of the Sri Lanka Foreign Employment Bureau.

Any Sri Lankan who lives, works, or holds dual citizenship in a foreign country are eligible to import an electric vehicle under the scheme.

According to the circular issued by the Ministry in this regard,, from May 1, 2022 to April 30, 2023, when sending an amount of more than 3000 US dollars, a license to import a motorcycle with a CIF value less than 50 percent of the amount sent is available.

If sending USD 20,000 or more between May 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022, a permit can be obtained to import an electric car. Accordingly, the opportunity to import an electric car, a double cab, a van or a tipper is available.

The Minister emphasized that to be eligible for this benefit, it is mandatory to direct the remittances sent to Sri Lanka through the legal channels such as the banking system or an authorized agent and 50% of the money has been converted into rupees.

Speaking further, Manusha Nanayakkara noted that importing vehicles to Sri Lanka is currently prohibited but only migrant workers who send dollars to the country have the facility to import an electric vehicle.

“So make the most of this opportunity. Enjoy this benefit. As a ministry, we fully support it. Similarly, the tax levied on the import of luxury vehicles will also be revised in the future,” he said emphasizing that the permits are given only to import electric vehicles.

The vehicles should be unused vehicles, either brand new or mileage should be ‘0’. Similarly, it is mandatory to import within one year of the first registration.

“As the ministry, we hope that the battery pack and electric motor of this imported vehicle should have a warranty of at least three years from the manufacturer, importer and exporter,” he added.

It should also be ensured that the battery will be disposed of in accordance with international electric vehicle road safety standards and approved standard procedures.

“The remittances sent to Sri Lanka can be converted into rupees and the taxes for this can be paid. They must also be subject to Department of Motor Vehicles compliance. A car should be able to drive at least two hundred kilometers after charging once. Similarly, a report of all money remitted to Sri Lanka should also be submitted through the relevant bank.”

The Minister further said that the application and information can be downloaded from the website of the Ministry of Labor or the Foreign Employment Bureau, and that the work related to the import of the license can be done by presenting the documents related to importing the vehicle and working in a foreign country, and sending money to Sri Lanka.

He said after producing proof that money has been remitted through official channels and the documents related to the importation of the vehicle, the measures to initiate providing the vehicle import permit can be carried out.

The minister also said here that the imported vehicle cannot be transferred to a third party until two years have passed from the registration and if required by paying an additional amount of US dollars equivalent to ten percent of the CIF value, facilities have been provided to transfer the vehicle before two years.

Ministry of Labor and Foreign Employment R.P.A. Wimalaweera was also present at the occasion.

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