- Approval granted following meeting with Presidential Taskforce chief Basil Rajapaksa
- Operation permission also extended to all supply chain partners and indirect exporters
- Companies expected to provide BOI and EDB a set of information for approval
- SLAMERP urges companies to provide required healthcare and sanitary facilities for workers
By Shabiya Ali Ahlam
The local rubber manufacturing and export industry has received the nod from the government this week to kick start operations, a step taken towards getting the halted supply chains back on track.
The approval was given after industry representatives met with Presidential Taskforce Chairman Basil Rajapaksa seeking permission to ‘re-start’ the industry during the unavoidable curfew imposed by the government to contain the coronavirus (COVID-19) spread in the country.
“The rubber manufacturers and the export industry were given the full green light to start production. The sector (rubber) and the total supply chains linked to it will be allowed to start work immediately with necessary facilitation of curfew passes,” Sri Lanka Association of Manufacturers and Exporters of Rubber Products (SLAMERP) Director General Rohan Masakorala said.
He added that the approval is extended to all supply chain partners and indirect exporters where the parties would be able to open up the supply chain by providing a series of information to the relevant authorities.
The set of information regarding factory operations which the companies are expected to provide to the Board of Investment (BOI), Export Development Board (EDB) – for non-BOI entities— and the Ministry of Plantations include; the number of workers and their details, location of the factory (GS/GA division, police station, district and province), the number of vehicles needing curfew passes, drivers’ details, daily requirement of workers, the districts/places of individual workers requiring passes and any other suppliers/indirect exporters/ shipping and logistics requirements.
The approval will be issued by the BOI and the EDB.
Furthermore, given that the curfew in place is not a general one but imposed for health and wellbeing of the country, the Association stressed that all entities seeking approval to re-start operations must take the necessary health and safety precautions by providing the required healthcare and sanitary facilities that are in accordance to the government guidelines.
The SLAMERP also asserted the need to educate the workforce across the supply chain on the importance of the industry to the national economy and the reasons it is given ‘special attention’ by the government.