However, it is said that the Customs has been unable to ascertain whether the stock was imported before or after the ban was imposed.
However, sources add that an Ethanol consignment ordered by the company was released last Friday.
Meanwhile, 'The Morning' reports that a shipment of ethanol ordered for the production of alcohol, was cleared late on Friday evening following inspection.
The shipment was held by Customs on suspicion that it was ordered after the government imposed the ban.
Director of Customs Sunil Jayarathna told The Sunday Morning that 20 tankers were being held by Sri Lanka Customs under this suspicion.
The shipment was ordered by the Harry Jayawardena-led Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka PLC (DCSL), the country’s largest liquor manufacturer, according to the Director General of Customs (Retd.) Major General Vijitha Ravipriya. However, he said investigations were conducted by Customs to see whether the shipments of ethanol have been imported to the country before or after the government ban was imposed, and were subsequently cleared.
In January, Finance Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa ordered the ban on the import of ethanol, the main input of arrack, in what the Government said was a bid to protect domestic producers.
The Government last week announced that the ethanol ban would not be lifted and it would confiscate the alleged shipments of ethanol that have been brought into the country following the imposition of the ban.
Commenting further, he said the State-owned Sevanagala and Palewatta sugar factories have commenced production of locally manufactured ethanol and the two factories are involved in 100% production of locally manufactured ethanol, which has proved to be sufficient to cover the requirement of the country.
(Excerpts : themorning.lk)