Selling fast: Sri Lanka to import 92 m more eggs from India

Wednesday, 30 August 2023 00:38 –      – 28

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The Cabinet of Ministers approved the import of 92.1 million eggs from India again in the next three months in a bid to stabilise the prices and address the shortage in the local market.

A resolution in this regard, furnished by President Ranil Wickremesinghe in his capacity as the Minister of Finance, Economic Stabilisation and National Policies, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers at its meeting on Monday.

“The eggs will be imported through the State Trading (Miscellaneous) Corporation, considering the recommendation made by the Standing Procurement Committee appointed by the Cabinet of Ministers based on the price specifications,” Co-Cabinet Spokesman and Minister Bandula Gunawardena said at the post-Cabinet meeting media briefing yesterday.

Accordingly, the Government has already called for quotations from three Indian companies recommended by the Department of Animal Production and Health.

On 26 July, the Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) published an Extraordinary Gazette, revoking the order that had set the MRP for eggs in April. The Gazette, issued under the powers vested by Section 20(5) of the Consumer Affairs Authority Act, No. 9 of 2003 (Amended), was signed by CAA Chairman Shantha Niriella.

Producers and consumers alike were optimistic about the potential decrease in egg prices below Rs. 50, assuming that it would allow the market to find a balance based on supply and demand dynamics following the removal of the Maximum Retail Price (MRP). However, with more imported eggs to arrive in the market, stakeholders were confused about the Government’s new move.

Previously, the All-Island Poultry Farmers’ Association assured that by December, the industry could achieve self-sufficiency, leading to prices dropping below Rs. 35. However, they called on the Government to gradually reduce egg imports from India as the local producers’ eggs will release higher output to the market in the coming months with the Government slashing the import tax on maize by 50%.