Sri Lanka raised fuel prices below formula in March: Fin Min

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has raised fuel prices below a price formula to help people prepare for an upcoming Sinhala and Tamil New Year season, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera said.

From December 2018 to March 2019, crude prices have gone up by 30 percent, from about 53.8 dollars a barrel to 70.4 dollars, he said.

Under a formula, petrol prices should have been raised to 137 rupees a litre, but it was raised only to 132 rupees, he said.

Diesel prices should have been raised to 117 rupees a litre but it was only raised to 102, he said. He said the government was intervening to cushion the prices.

The rupee has also stabilised, he said.

Sri Lanka Central Bank has depreciated the currency from 130 to 180 rupees since the United National Party led administration came to power, following an explicit policy of depreciation generating monetary instability through an unstable peg.

There have been calls to reform the Central Bank to help reduce monetary and economic instability to help Sri Lanka progress and stop the living standard of the people from being undermined. (Colombo/Mar13/2019-SB)

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