The UNF threatened to reduce import duties on commodities, starting with sugar, if local traders start hoarding goods to increase prices.
rnThe import duty on sugar was reduced with immediate effect on Friday to control a surge in sugar prices in the local market.rn
rnThe price of a kilogram of sugar went up from Rs 35.00 to Rs 40.00 and above, over the last few months and the government reduced import duty on sugar, with immediate effect, to bring down prices.rn
rnSri Lanka imports around 520,000 tonnes of sugar annually because domestic production can only supply 10 percent of local demand. rn
rnThe adjustment to import duty is expected to reduce the price of sugar by Rs 5.00 but the duty reduction will see the government lose Rs 250 mn in revenue a month.rn
rnMeanwhile the CWE was told to release its buffer stocks to the market to ensure there is no immediate supply shortage.rn
rnThe Commerce ministry is also looking at the possibilities of removing the 15 percent VAT on sugar imports.r