The government’s move to increase the levy on dubbed foreign films, tele dramas and commercial programmes to Rs. 150,000 from Rs. 90,000 is aimed at improving local production while ensuring the propagation of Sri Lankan values, Finance and Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera said on Tuesday.
He told reporters this decision was taken on a request made by artists and organizations affiliated to the cinema and tele drama industry in the country. The current minimum charge of Rs. 90,000 per day imposed on tele dramas or films dubbed in Sinhala or Tamil language which consists of a maximum of four parts and with duration of 30 minutes or more has been increased to Rs. 150,000.
The relevant gazette notification has been issued by the minister and it came into effect from midnight yesterday. Hindi and Tamil soap operas are very popular in the island, with several local television networks telecasting these programmes with sub-titles or dubbed in to Sinhala. Hindi, Malayalam and Tamil films also enjoy great popularity here. Under the present set up beaming of such popular teledramas and films will have to be halted or restricted due to the increase of the levy, several heads of media institutions said. (Bandula)