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Sri Lanka’s controversial LakSathosa to import 20,000MT rice monthly

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s LakSathosa, a state-run trading firm is mired in corruption scandals running into billions of rupees has again been given approval by the cabinet of ministers to import rice ostensibly to bring down prices.

LakSathosa will import 20,000 metric tonnes of rice a month under a proposal submitted by Trade Minister Rishard Bathiudeen.

Private traders are already importing rice, but according to Minister Bathiudeen has noted that prices have not come down fast enough.

In the past LakSathosa had been faulted by Auditor General for buying rice at high prices and selling at low prices.

Due to lack of facilities imported rice worth billions of rupees has deteriorated in a few months due to lack of proper storage facilities.

The ministry had proposed that LakSathosa maintain a ‘buffer stock’ of 100,000 metric tonnes of rice.

Sri Lanka consumes about 240,000 tonnes of rice a month. But due to a drought in 2016, there is a crop failure. (Colombo/Mar01/2017)

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