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No major positive impact on plantation companies-PA

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Devaluation of rupee against dollar:
Planters’Association senior members at the press conference yesterday. Picture by Saliya Rupasinghe

The devaluation of the rupee against the dollar would not have a major positive impact for plantation companies, Plantation Association of Ceylon (PA) officials said at a press conference yesterday.

The main reason for this was that the price of the fertilizer that is imported has increased by a huge margin and many other unforeseen slimmer overheads, emerging, PA Media spokesman Roshan Rajadurai said. He said that for example a metric ton of fertilizer at the subsidized rate before was Rs. 30,000 but today it has risen to a staggering Rs. 360,000 per MT.

In addition the payment of Rs. 1,000 per plucker and other expenses has fuelled their overheads and are eating into their profits. He appealed to the government that the industry be given a free hand to manage RPC’s professionally minus political influence. He also said that it’s too premature to ascertain the impact from the Russian Ukraine conflict. “Tea is still imported to Russia through different channels.”

Secretary PA Lalith Obeyesekere said that they want to diversify to make better profits specially from the palm oil plantation sector. “However we are not allowed to replant even scientifically. This is very sad.”

The PA officials also said that they had invested billions on renewable energy, replanting, providing housing and welfare to over 110,000 workers and their families and even during the C-19 lockdown they looked after the staff better than some of the other industries.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022 – 01:00

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