Sri Lanka hikes medicine prices amid financial crisis

Edited By: Manas Joshi
Colombo Updated: Apr 30, 2022, 04:20 PM(IST)

People shout slogans against Sri Lanka President Rajapaksa in Colombo Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

The nation is witnessing countrywide protests from citizens who are reeling from lengthy blackouts and acute shortages of food, fuel and pharmaceuticals. People are demanding government's resignation

Sri Lanka, in the midst of an economic crisis decided on Saturday that price of dozens of commonly used medicined would be increased by 40 per cent.

The nation is witnessing countrywide protests from citizens who are reeling from lengthy blackouts and acute shortages of food, fuel and pharmaceuticals. People are demanding government's resignation.

Antibiotics, non-prescription painkillers and medications for heart conditions and diabetes will all be subject to the price rise, health minister Channa Jayasumana said.

Industry officials said the latest hike was necessary to offset the impact of fuel prices, which have doubled since December.

According to official figures, Sri Lanka's inflation rate was at nearly 30 per cent in April. This was seventh consecutive record high.

Sri Lanka has run out of foreign currency to import sorely needed essential goods.

Also Read | Sri Lanka president agrees to form all-party interim government with a new PM, say reports

The government this month announced a default on its $51 billion foreign debt and asked citizens abroad to donate money to help the island out of its economic predicament.

Sri Lanka has asked for an International Monetary Fund bailout, which could take up to three months to arrive.

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On Friday (April 30), Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has agreed to form an all-party interim government led by a new prime minister

(With inputs from agencies)
 

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