As the prices of four popular brands of milk powder went up by as much as 25%, the government yesterday said it was helpless since it could not prevent price fluctuations in the international market.
The price of a one kilogram pack of Highland milk was increased from Rs. 340 to Rs. 425, while the 400 gram standard pack went up by Rs. 140 to Rs. 180. The prices of Lakspray, Diamond and Laksathosa were also increased to Rs. 425 a kilogram while the price of the Lakspray welfare pack was increased from Rs. 145.50 to Rs.152.
Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Bandula Gunawardana told the monthly news briefing yesterday his ministry was helpless since it could not prevent the fluctuations in the international market. `The prices of milk food go up when there is an escalation of prices in the world market,` Minister Gunawardana said adding that the Cost of Living Committee headed by Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka had decided to continue the price formula introduced following an agreement reached with importers of essential food items for the month of June too.
In comparison to the prices of May, prices of certain food items had come down while some prices had been increased, he said.