Monday, 03 March 2014 - 19:52
Customs seize 5 illegally imported containers of dried Arico - nut
The Customs verified that the company which imported five containers of dried ariconut to the country illegally has no permit to import ariconut.
A senior official of the National Quarantine Center told our news team that importers of goods such as dried ariconut should obtain a permit from the National Quarantine beforehand.
Meanwhile Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana said that Cabinet approval for dried ariconut has been given only to a private company called Wayamba Traders.
The five containers of dried ariconut were seized by the Customs last Friday as the importer failed to submit the necessary Custom documents.
The Customs estimated that around 30 tons of dried ariconut are packed inside the five containers imported by a Pettah Muslim trader.
However Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana said that several private companies had sought permission to import dried ariconut to the country.
Meanwhile local media reported today that a powerful politician has been pressurizing the Custom officials to release the five containers.
Our news team contacted Customs Department Media Spokesman Lesley Gamini to comment on the alleged political intimidation.