THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:The government has decided to checkmate unfair trade practices, including underpricing, pursued by some rubber dealers much to the chagrin of rubber growers and turning the package announced in December last going off the target objective of ensuring a better price for natural rubber (NR) produced in state.
Towards this end, the government is toying with the idea of going in for rubber procurement by various agencies under it and entering into direct supply contracts with tyre companies. A scheme to lift RSS-5 grade sheet rubber at higher prices has also been mooted and Rubber Board has been asked to hold discussions with tyre companies.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy told the post-Cabinet briefing here on Wednesday that two tyre companies have even written to the government recently, stating that many dealers are cheating growers by paying only a lesser price, though the consuming industries are paying a price 20 per cent higher than the daily Bangkok rates for RSS-4, published by the Rubber Board, as per the agreement inked on December 18 last year.
The State Government has also waived the 5 per cent purchase tax for tyre companies till March 31 this year.
The Cabinet meet discussed the scenario in which a few rubber dealers and suppliers are amassing profits by offering a lower price than the rates offered by tyre companies, Chandy said.