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India hands over first shipment of 44,000 tonnes of urea fertilizer to Sri Lanka

India hands over first shipment of 44,000 tonnes of urea fertilizer to Sri Lanka

Monday, July 11, 2022, 10:02 a.m. SL time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

July 11, Colombo: Fertilizer vessel carrying 44,000 metric tons of fertilizer, the first part of a 65,000 MT stockpile of urea fertilizer to be supplied to Sri Lanka under the Indian program of lending aid Reached the port of Colombo on Saturday (09) at 11:00 a.m.

The official delivery of the fertilizer stock to Sri Lanka took place on Sunday (10) at the official residence of the Indian High Commissioner (India House) in Colombo.

Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Gopal Baglay handed over the documents relating to the urea fertilizer stockpile to Agriculture Minister Mahinda Amaraweera and Additional Secretary Mahesh Gammanpila and the chairmen of the two fertilizer companies belonging to the government were also present at the event.

Expressing his views on the occasion, the minister said he expressed his gratitude to the Indian government for its decision to provide urea-based fertilizers at a time when Sri Lankan agriculture was facing a crisis. .

The Minister said that during his short tenure as Minister of Agriculture, he had taken steps to solve many problems faced by farmers. “At the same time, it will be possible to provide urea-based fertilizers to farmers, especially during the Yala season. At present, the rice fields in our country have grown to 505,000 hectares. Additionally, negotiations with the World Bank have so far been successful to provide the urea fertilizer needed for the Maha season.

“Farmers had around Rs. 30,000 million in unpaid loans to banks for many years. Steps have been taken to deregister them all. Thanks to this, about one million farmers will be freed from their debts.

Amaraweera also mentioned that this is the last time he will serve as Minister of Agriculture and he has decided to resign as Minister.

Speaking on the occasion, the Indian High Commissioner, Mr. Gopal Bhaglay, said the stockpile of fertilizer had been handed over to the Minister of Agriculture for official handover to the government of Sri Lanka today.

“This fertilizer is provided under an Indian loan scheme. As the Government of India, we always support our neighboring friend, Sri Lanka. The Minister also mentioned that we hope to continue this cooperation. »

The unloading of the fertilizer stock is currently underway at the port of Colombo and should be completed in ten days.

The Commercial Fertilizer Company will distribute the fertilizer stock to 566 agrarian service centers using 800 trucks. The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation provided 125,000 liters of fuel for this.