“Vehicle prices subside but could spark again in Dec. or Jan.”
The artificial price hike created by some vested parties during the pandemic period has now subsided and vehicle prices have somewhat reduced a bit Vehicle Importers Association of Lanka (VIAL) President Indika Sampath Merenchige told Daily News Business.
The VIAL Chief said the secondhand vehicle market also befell the same predicament with people with vested interests creating an artificial price hike by investing their additional monies in purchasing vehicles.
Merenchige however cautioned that this would nevertheless take a u- turn unless the government came out with some relief packages for vehicle importers without further delay. He said the government must empower businessmen at this difficult juncture by providing relief from banks and also come out with a credit line facility for vehicle importers in the forthcoming budget proposals. Failing to do so by December or January vehicle prices would see a steep increase once again he cautioned. The VIAL President said although the future is electric vehicles, these automobiles were high in price and they also needed a solid infrastructure network to be sustained. He also expressed dismay over policymakers not having a specific timeline for the easing of import restrictions and also voice his disappointment over speculations that these taboos will continue until the foreign exchange and reserves situation improved. Stringent limitations were put in force on vehicle imports in early 2020 with the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent lock downs introduced by the government.
This resulted in a severe scarcity of vehicles in the market which led to a sharp increase in vehicle prices in the country. (MFJ)