As the Ukraine crisis deepens and the international supply chain situation worsens, and as a result of the disruption of supply chains and the world increase in the prices of gas, bakeries have been struggling to continue operating and providing their essential services to the overall population. Sri Lanka is going through a crippling financial crisis with a whopping 70 percent decrease in foreign exchange at $2.3 billion in January.
The government is struggling to meet its obligations of providing staples to its population, not the least of which is fuel. The Bakery Owners’ Association says that more than a thousand bakeries had to be closed down due to the gas shortage. The cooking gas shortage has almost doubled bread prices in some urban areas. Kumara Nanayakkara, a unionist, said people would have to stand in long queues to purchase staples, casting doubt on the government and their action to mitigate the crisis. Bakery owners have expressed their dismay at their work conditions, adding that their stock of gas cylinders is not sufficient, adding that it costs an arm and a leg to get a hold of cooking gas. Some have been forced to close their bakeries, as staff and workers complained that they do not have enough money to go back home.