Sri Lanka intercepts more smuggled Kendu leaf

Sri Lanka has intercepted over two tonnes of Kendu leaf, used for making beedi, a type of cheap traditional cigarette used in South Asia, as smuggling pick up amid an economic crisis and legal cigarette prices go up.

Sri Lanka Coast Guard seized the latest stock on January 18.

“Sri Lanka Coast Guard personnel attached to Coast Guard Station Chilaw arrested two persons along with a consignment of 2,467 kilos of Kendu Leaves being smuggled into the island via sea routes by using three FGDs,” a statement said.

Sri Lanka’s rupee collapsed in 2022 after two year of money printing and a failed float with a surrender requirement making it more difficult to afford legal cigarettes with a high tax. Taxes on both cigarettes and beedi have been raised.

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