Government accords priority to the agriculture sector modernization
The Government has accorded priority to the modernization of the agriculture sector in its bid to create it as an effective, sustainable and profitable livelihood and also serve the competitive international markets amidst the ill effects of previous regime’s organic farming countrywide.
The new agri crop cultivation modernization drive comes into effect where around 8000 acres of paddy fields are on the verge of destruction,
This was a result of using organic fertilizer during the past three seasons in accordance with the arrogance and stupid policy of the former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
Over the past three cultivation seasons, chemical fertilizers such as TSP (Mud fertilizer), Urea and MOP were not applied to the field.
Therefore, the amount of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium which should be available in the soil is presently at a very low level and lack of such required nutrients have caused yellowing of paddy plants, agriculture ministry disclosed.
Although Urea and MOP were provided during this Maha season some farmers have not yet applied MOP to their paddy fields.
The total amount of MOP sold by Commercial Fertilizer Company and Ceylon Fertilizer Company is only 1800 metric tons. This has also impacted on the growth of paddy plants.
Commenting on this, the Minister Mahinda Amarawera stated that due to the failure of the 2021 Maha season, the government had to spend USD 400 million on importing rice from abroad in 2022, but he said with confidence that he would not have to import a grain of rice from abroad this year..
The Ministry of Agriculture has planned to implement a program to encourage exporters of agricultural products in Sri Lanka from the year 2023.
Accordingly, Minister of Agriculture, Mahinda Amaraweera noted that the government has decided to provide maximum facilities for the production of agricultural products aimed at export.
Accordingly, the 2023 budget has allocated a large sum of money for the promotion of the export agriculture sector.
There is a huge demand in the international market for grains such as sesame, green grams, soya beans, as well as vegetables and fruits produced in our country. But still we have not been able to provide a supply that matches the demand.
The measures taken by the Ministry of Agriculture’s Agricultural Modernization Project to send sour bananas to the foreign market were evaluated here.
Although 12,500 kg are exported to Dubai every week, although it is a small amount, they appreciated the effort to introduce the process of producing sour bananas in export condition and processing them in a manner suitable for the foreign market, he said.