The price of a matchbox is set to double — from Re 1 to Rs 2 — from December 1 because of an increase in the cost of raw materials used.
Representatives of five major matchbox industry bodies met at Sivakasi and decided to increase the
of a matchbox, TOI reported.
The hike in price of a matchbox is after a gap of 14 years — last time it was revised from 50 paise to Re 1 in 2007.
Manufacturers pointed out that most of the 14 raw materials used are much costlier now. Red phosphorus now comes at Rs 810 instead of Rs 425 and wax at Rs 80 instead of Rs 58. Prices of box boards, paper, splints, potassium chlorate and sulphur have also increased since October 10.
Apart from the above, the hike in fuel prices increased the cost of transportation forcing them to go for an increase in price.
Secretary of the National Small Matchbox Manufacturers’ Association VS Sethurathinam told TOI that manufacturers are selling a bundle of 600 matchboxes for Rs 270 to Rs 300. “We have decided to increase the selling price from our units by 60% to Rs 430-480 per bundle. This is excluding 12% GST and cost of transportation,” he said.
The industry directly or indirectly employs more than four lakh people in Tamil Nadu. It is also facing an instability in its labour forces as many of the workers preferred to work under the better paying MGNREGA scheme.