June 12, Colombo: Sri Lanka's state owned whole sale network, Lanka Sathosa is growing and he government has no plans to privatize it, Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen says.
Minister Bathiudeen addressing the opening of 479th branch of Lanka Sathosa in Kattankudy, Batticaloa on after opening the 478th branch in Kokkadicholai on Saturday said the Lanka Sathosa, was improved it on many aspects under his purview.
"Lanka Sathosa expansion program is to strengthen our largest state owned supermarket system and not to privatize it as falsely claimed by certain individuals," the Minister said.
The Minister said the number of Sathosa outlets increased to 479 from 300 after he took over. He said the Number of outlasts will be increased to 500 by December and another 8000 franchise shops will be enlisted in future.
Ministry Bathiudeen said he handed over the Lanka Sathosa's personnel recruitment procedure over to the consultancy firm KPMG who recruited qualified personnel to run it.
"Lanka Sathosa not only serves Sri Lankan consumers but even steps in to assist at times of disaster. This is done by giving out dry rations to the government to be given to the people. For example, Lanka Sathosa's in Ratnapura Electorate alone delivered Rs 10 Million dry rations to Divisional Secretariat officials to be distributed to the flood victims there," the Minister commented.
According to Minister Bathiudeen, Lanka Sathosa's annual sales turnover is now around Rs 30 billion. Almost 93% of its expenditure in 2016 was spent for capital development projects.