June 12, 2013 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s vehicle importers have been badly hit by a sharp increase in theft of parts in vehicles imported via Hambantota port and security has been tightened, officials said. “Our members frequently complain to us that there is a strong increase in the stealing of vehicle parts especially in the past two months,” Keerthi Gunawardena, secretary of the Vehicle Importers Association of Lanka said.
He said in addition to accessories like radios, engine parts are now also being stolen and hybrid cars were increasingly targeted by thieves.
Gunawardene said they were not getting tally sheets from shipping agents at the moment to check the accessories cars were shipped with at the point of export and delivery and they have requested them to no avail so far.
Ports authority chief Priyath Wickrema said security at Hambantota port was being tightened to counter the thefts.
“It is only two weeks since I came to know about this,” he said. “However we have already increased the security presence inside the Port and stopped the stealing,â€
“We have also called tenders for installing a special security camera system inside the Hambantota Port premises, so the issue