Govt. says prices slashed, but traders stick to old prices


Despite a Government decision to slash the prices of several commodities with immediate effect, traders both wholesale and retail are still clinging on to the old price tags, the Sunday Times learns.

The traders claimed they would have to dispose of the old stocks before reverting to the new price list formulated by the Government, or else they would have to face huge losses.

The authorities have decided to reduce the price of canned fish by Rs. 35, dried fish by Rs. 25, fish by Rs. 25, sprats by Rs. 20, potatoes by Rs. 20 and big onions by Rs. 10 per kilo. In addition, the price for Litro and Laugfs Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) has been slashed by Rs. 150.
Meanwhile, traders yesterday pointed out that the government decision to bring down the prices was not clear and therefore they will stick to the former prices.

“The authorities must provide us with the source for purchase of the listed imported items so that we could adjust accordingly,” U. R. Dayanandasiri with the Dambulla Traders’ Association said. He said many wholesale traders purchase stocks such as dried fish, fish and to a lesser extent, potatoes from local farmers and traders where there is no import tax on these items.
“Therefore it will be difficult to sell at the government-announced rates because prices of these commodities will change from time-to-time depending on availability and demand,” he said.

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