Rising prices a worldwide phenomenon - Minister Anura Yapa
Rising prices of essential food items is common to whole world. It is
beyond our control. However we try to control the prices by distributing
essential commodities through the islandwide network of co-operative
societies, said Media and Information Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa.
He was addressing a ceremony held to mark the opening of Makandura
Co-op City of Sandalankawa Nava MPCS.
Minister of Media and Information Anura Priyadharshana Yapa
pays for items he bought from the Makandura Co-op City Super
Trade Centre of Sandalankawa Nava MPCS. Picture by H.M.
Abeysinghe, Kuliyapitiya group correspondent
The Minister said, co-operative societies have to play a vital role
in the process of eliminating the exploitation of the consumers to bring
down the cost of living. The rising prices of essential commodities is
the inevitable result of the fuel crisis. Even in America the rate of
inflation is rising due to that. It is beyond the control of world
He said, oil production is raised to its optimum quantity now but the
demand for fuel is rising as more vehicles are used. When the demand is
rising and the supply is stable the price rises. That is a simple
Now the capitalist countries are producing bio-diesel from cereals.
Accordingly the cereals we consume, would be used for running motor
vehicles. We must understand that reality.
The Minister said, the inflation caused by the fuel crisis and
shortage of cereals could be controlled had we produced essential food
items for our consumption doing away with the “from ship to mouth”
economy. The Government had launched the grow more food campaign through
“Api Wawamu - Rata Nagamu” (Let’s grow and build the country) programme
to meet that end.
The surplus production could be distributed among the needy consumers
at a reasonable price. That is the only solution for rising prices of
essential commodities and control the rising inflation rate.
Wayamba Provincial Minister of Co-operative, Social Welfare,
Probation and Childcare, Power and Housing, Piyasiri Ramanayaka said,
the President as the Minister of Finance had granted various relief and
concessions to the co-operative societies, exempting them from taxes,
abolishing loans and granting Rs. 1 million for each MPCS to inaugurate
a super trade centre. Co-op cities are those super trade centres
inaugurated accordingly. This is the 21st Co-op City opened in Wayamba,
and 12 more would follow.
This is the first time in history such a grant was made to the
co-operative movement. The societies are expected to make use of such
grants to relieve consumers from the burden of rising prices of
essential commodities. If it failed that is the fault of the Boards of
Directors and executives of the societies.
He added, the co-operative is a people’s movement directed for the
elimination of exploitation. The members, directors and employees should
bear that in mind.
The Provincial Minister said we in Wayamba had taken steps to
increase the salaries of co-operative employees. accordingly, the
minimum salary would be Rs. 8,050 per month. For the first time in
history co-operative employees in Wayamba would be granted pension
The statute to that effect is already before the Provincial Council.
When passed by the Council and sanctioned by the Governor the
co-operative employees would receive a pension of 80 per cent of the
salary they received at the time of retirement.
Chairman Munendra Witharana, Director Raja Pathirana, General Manager
A.M. Leelaratna and Wayamba Provincial Commissioner of Co-Operatives Ms.
Kumari Weerasekara also spoke.