Sri Lanka Kelani Valley Plantations in the red

May 14, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Kelani Valley Plantations, part of the Hayleys group, said it made a 46 million rupee loss in the March quarter compared with a net profit of 157 million rupees a year ago. It said in a stock exchange filing that sales fell 43 percent to 490 million rupees in the quarter owing to the combined impact of a massive shortfall in its tea crop and a sharp decline in rubber prices.

Tea output fell 42 percent owing to the severe drought in the period, which cost s200 million rupees in revenue terms, while rubber production fell 11 percent and prices fell sharply.

This resulted in revenue from rubber declining by 160 million rupees or 49 percent, the company said.

“Despite these setbacks, Kelani Valley Plantations had continued to maintain its agricultural and other assets and intends to continue this practice,” the company said.

“Substantial investments have been made in recent years on replanting, upgrading factory buildings, machinery and other infrastructure.”

Kelani Valley Plantations manages 27 estates with an extent of more than 13,000 hectares, divided almost equally in to tea and rubber.