Volatile Prices

April 30, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s two liquid petroleum gas suppliers, a unit of multinational Shell Gas, and the locally owned Laugfs Gas, said they will raise prices from midnight Thursday. It said prices were cut in November 2008 and January 2009 because of lower import costs.

“Import costs for February and March 2009 have reflected an increase compared to the preceding two months resulting in a price increase,” it said. The price of a 12.5 kilo cylinder of Shell Gas will be increased by 191 rupees to 1,500 rupees and that of the other supplier Laugfs Gas by 238 rupees to 1,307 rupees.

Consumer affairs minister Bandula Gunawardena said the price hike was because of higher global petroleum prices and not more government taxes.

Shell Gas Lanka said in a statement the price of a 2.3 kilo cylinder will be raised by 35 rupees to 276 rupees.

The prices are based on the import cost for February and March 2009 and have been approved by the Consumer Affairs Authority in line with the pricing formula agreement with the suppliers, it said.

Shell Gas Lanka said it had previously passed on the benefits of lower international petroleum prices to consumers according to the prici