Fireworks manufacturers lament lack of raw materials

The All Island Fireworks Association (AIFA) expressed concern over the current position of fireworks manufacturers in Kimbulapitiya and said unlike in previous years, the fireworks manufacturing industry has come to a virtual standstill owing to the shortage of the required chemicals.

Nitrates, potassium and aluminum powder are the main chemicals used to manufacture fireworks and currently only a limited quantity is imported due to financial problems.

This will result in fireworks manufacturers in Kimbulapitiya and several other areas in the country to manufacture only a limited quantity of fireworks during the forthcoming festive season.

Speaking to the Daily News AIFA President Dinesh Fernando said even during the Covid-19 period from 2021to 2022 fireworks manufacturers all over the country had to face financial hardship.

Fernando said although several requests were made by manufacturers to authorities to import the required chemicals, they have not yet taken measures and the available chemicals in the market are also very expensive.

“As there is a massive shortage of required chemicals, nearly 40 percent of fireworks manufacturers have stopped production,” he said.

He said the fireworks currently in the market were manufactured using available chemicals.

Fernando said unless immediate measures are taken to import chemicals, fireworks manufacturers will stop producing firecrackers for the forthcoming Christmas and New Year seasons.

He said there are over 225 authorized fireworks manufacturers in Kimbulapitiya and nearly 50,000 people depend on the industry.

“The authorities should know that firecrackers are used not only during Christmas and the Sinhala and Tamil New Year seasons, but also during the Vesak, Poson, Deepavali and Thai Pongal seasons.

“The firecrackers are also used by event organizers and hoteliers to entertain local and foreign tourists,” he said.

According to history, the manufacture of fireworks commenced in Ceylon in Kimbulapitiya during the Portuguese period and later extended to few other main cities including Kandy, Galle, Kurunegala and Ratnapura.

by Daily News Sri Lanka

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