Lanka Salt Ltd is embarking on a 3-year development programme to transform the industry and keep pace with modern times in line with economic changes that were taking place in the Hambantota District creating a Salt City in the Mahalewaya saltern, Chairman of the company Mahinda Gunawardena told the Business Times.
He noted that Lanka Salt recorded the highest ever sales revenue of over Rs.1 billion in 2009, compared to Rs. 632 million in 2008. This was possible due to optimum production of 63,384 Metric Tons (MT) against the forecast of 80,000 MT, at the fully automated salt processing and iodization factory, he added.
He revealed that this factory was gifted to Sri Lanka by the Micronutrient Initiative of Canada on a request made by him in his capacity as the National Coordinator for the International Council for the Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders. Lanka Salt Ltd is being managed as a profitable public and private sector entity with its major shareholder being the Employees Trust Fund Board.
The company recorded a profit of Rs 155.97 million, up from Rs. 94.53 million in 2008, according to the company’s annual report. Mr Gunawardena said in his statement that the highest ever dividend of 40% has been declared to shareholders on their investments considering the positive achievements of the company. Bundala and Palatupana Salterns are now being developed as autonomous production centres.
The company also generated seasonal employment for 2000 persons and permanent employment to 630 persons during the year, he said. Lanka Salt is the market leader making available salt manufactured according to the highest trade, health and process standards.
The salt production is totally factory iodised and conforms to SLS 79, Iodisation conformity laid down by International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders (ICCIDD), process conformity as per ISO 9001-2000.