Trade Minister explains CBSL’s import restrictions on 623 goods

In a statement issued today (Sep. 10), the minister stated that the Opposition is attempting to the mislead the public through such reports.

On Thursday (Sep. 09), the Central Bank of Sri Lanka announced the decision to impose a 100 per cent cash margin deposit requirement against the importation of selected goods of non-essential/non-urgent nature made under Letters of Credit and Documents against Acceptance terms with Licensed Commercial Banks and National Savings Bank, with immediate effect.

The decision was made by the Monetary Board of the Central Bank, aiming to support the ongoing efforts to preserve the stability of the exchange rate and foreign currency market liquidity, particularly by discouraging excessive imports of speculative nature.

The minister said the Central Bank’s decision came at a time when flawed foreign exchange management policy of the previous government, the 2019 Easter Sunday terror attacks and COVID-19 pandemic had driven the country to a foreign exchange crisis.

Explaining new import restrictions, Minister Gunawardana noted that an import ban has not been imposed on these 623 goods which include air conditioners, electric fans, refrigerators and freezers, nor has the percentage of tax levied on these items been increased.

Hence, there will be no increase in the prices of these goods, he added. – ada derana

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