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Sri Lanka to abolish import control fee for tea


June 21, 2017 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s cabinet nod has been received to abolish the import control license fee for imported tea in line with 2017 budget proposals. There has been a significant debate on the issue of importing cheaper leaves for blending and re-export, over fears of damaging Ceylon Tea brand. Some tea exporters however want to import leaves from countries like Kenya, Vietnam and Indonesia, and blend them with higher quality local produce for higher returns. The country earlier charged 1 percent fee on CIF value of flavored and non-flavored imported tea as a control license fee.
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Instead of that the government has now proposed a license fee of 1,000 rupees to be charged for each and every license which will be issued to import tea for re-export purposes. This joint proposal has been submitted by Plantation Industries Minister Navin Dissanayake and International Trade Minister Malik Samarawickrama. Accordingly, the gazette notification No. 1953/28 is to be amended taking into affect the new revision.
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