The Sri Lanka Standards Institution (SLSI), which earlier refused SLS certification to Lucky Cement from Pakistan on the basis that the cement was of substandard quality, today lifted the ban on the cement after samples tests conducted in the UK showed that the cement was not of inferior quality, the Ministry of Cooperatives and Internal Trade said.
Ministry sources said the SLSI had immediately removed the ban after Lucky Cement challenged SLSI by transferring cement samples to a UK based company which conducted tests on Lucky Cement samples.
“The UK lab test results confirmed that the cement was not of inferior quality. It was immediately thereafter that SLSI lifted the ban,” sources said.
Over 14,000 cement bags which had already been imported out of a 100,000 cement bag consignment weighing 50kg each were imported by a company which the SLSI temporarily suspended SLS certification. The SLSI said earlier that the valid permit previously provided to the company had been temporarily suspended following continued quality assurance tests.
Meanwhile cement companies since early August have requested the Consumer Affairs Authority for a Rs.35 increase in cement stating that there has been an increase in production costs and shortages in cement. “These shortages have been created by the cement companies themselves and we have refused requests pertaining to cement price hikes and there will be no increase in cement prices,” sources said.