"This duty reduction directive by the Finance Ministry is only effective from January 11. But our consignment of 18 million litres of petrol arrived in Sri Lanka on January 8. When we hear that the there is going to be a duty reduction on petrol, we requested the Petroleum Ministry and the Finance Ministry to make January 8 the effective date of the duty waiver since our consignment was already shipped from India. But up to now there has not been any response to our request" LIOC Managing Director Suresh Kumar told DM Business.
He also said that since the supplying of petroleum cannot be interrupted targeting a duty reduction, they went ahead with getting down the consignment in hope that the authorities would alter the effective date to January 8.
Suresh Kumar also said that even though the duty on petrol is reduced, the losses incurred by the company in selling diesel remain same.
"We are losing Rs.21 from each litre of diesel sold" he said.
Sri Lanka reduced customs duty on petrol to 5 rupees a litre from 15 rupees to help maintain local prices. Bloomberg newswire quoted the Petroleum Ministry Secretary Titus Jayawardena saying reduced duty would help cut losses at state-run Ceylon Petroleum Corp. and Lanka IOC PLC.
LIOC a few days ago sought the government's approval for a price increase of Rs.3 to 5 for a liter of diesel and Rs. 15 for a litre of petrol.