Economic centres to remain open on May 24, 25

All economic centres will be open on May 24 and 25, Trade Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardena said. He added that farmers are allowed to move their products to economic centres on those days.

Accordingly, economic centres in Dambulla, Thambuttegema, Nuwara Eliya, Keppitipola, Veyangoda , Meegoda, Embilipitiya, and Welisara will function on both days.

Speaking at a media briefing held at the Government Information Department yesterday, Dr. Gunawardena stated that traders will have the opportunity to go to centres and pick up goods and deliver them to homes with the permission of the respective Divisional Secretariats. He said all Sathosa outlets will remain open during travel restrictions, but retail services will not be provided. The minister said that the government has taken the necessary steps to provide an uninterrupted supply of essential items. “Even though the travel restrictions have been imposed, shipping companies and warehouses of wholesale traders will remain open,” the minister added.

Responding to a question raised by a journalist, Dr. Gunawardena said that the prices of petroleum and gas in the world market are also increasing rapidly these days. He noted that the prices of any commodity will not be increased in the next three months. He added that the cost of transporting goods has increased “immensely” internationally due to the shortage of containers.

Highways Minister Johnston Fernando said that the government has not decided on a 14-day lockdown despite requests made by health experts. He added that it has been witnessed that various medical professionals have called for a 14-day lockdown to be imposed in Sri Lanka.

“We have already closed universities, schools and other institutions. As a government, we have already made certain decisions to overcome the situation,” the minister said. He requested the public to cooperate with the authorities and remain indoors during travel restrictions

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