Govt’s ban on palm oil imports: Many Industries Face Collapse – Harsha
By Buddhika Samaraweera
Many industries, including the bakery industry, in Sri Lanka are in danger of collapsing due to the Government's decision to ban the import of palm oil, said SJB MP Dr. Harsha de Silva.
Adding that it is learnt that the Government had decided to allow the import of palm oil for the bakery industry, under a licensing system, Dr. de Silva claimed that it would not be successful as the system would inevitably be politicised. He said, the licensing system, especially for sand mining and soil mining, has been entirely politicised and it would be the same with this issue as well.
“Politicising a competitive market would not solve any problem. Especially, margarine is made of 75 per cent palm oil and only 25 per cent coconut oil. Only a few companies import palm oil on a large scale. Through this system, which is planned to be put into place by the Government, small scale entrepreneurs will not be able to procure the palm oil for their products,” he added.
Speaking at a Media briefing at Opposition Leader’s Office in Colombo, Dr. de Silva further said, “the President and other authorities should consult with all parties before making such decisions. The ban on the import of palm oil has not been discussed with the Ministry of Trade, the Ministry of Finance or any other relevant party. Everyone saw what happened when the tax on sugar was reduced. So, do not allow such a thing to happen through this, he said and added that as a result of the ban on the importation of palm oil, there is a possibility of selling the available stocks at a higher price”.