Commenting on the sky rocketing vegetable prices, the Trade, Commerce, and Food Security Minister Nalin Fernando said if vegetables were imported, vegetables such as a kilo of carrot, beans and leeks can be supplied at Rs. 300 to Rs. 350.
“I informed the Secretary to the President to convene the Food Policy Committee and asked the Agriculture Ministry and other relevant institutions whether they can provide vegetables at a low rate. They have agreed at the Food Policy Committee to reduce vegetable prices within a month or one and half months. If vegetables were imported, we can provide a kilo of leeks, carrots and beans at Rs. 300 to Rs. 350,” he said.
He told reporters yesterday that the price of an imported egg was increased by Rs. 8 from today due to the increase in VAT and other taxes. An imported egg would be sold at Rs. 43 at all Sathosa outlets under the new price whereas it was previously sold at Rs. 35, he stated .
The Minister said the State Trading Corporation (STC) had imported eggs from India under new tenders after the VAT increase and considering the VAT hike, increase in other taxes and transport cost, prices of eggs were increased by Rs. 8.
“We observed for two weeks whether we can cater to the demand for eggs from local egg production. However, we observed that after the imported egg supply was stopped, egg prices in the market increased again up to Rs. 52 to 55. So, the State Trading Corporation decided to import eggs under new tenders to control the increase in prices,” he said.
The Minister said if the local suppliers were able to supply eggs at Rs. 43, the issue would be settled.