Oct 24, 2014 (economynext) – Si Lanka’s government budget for 2015 increased subsidies for coconut production, which has been badly hit by prolonged drought in growing regions.
The new and replanting subsidy for coconut was increased to Rs.10,000 per acre from Rs. 7,000 and the subsidy for the rehabilitation of coconut land to Rs. 20,000 per acre from Rs. 15,000.
Investment loans of up to Rs. 3 million will be given to small farmers to cover costs of soil improvement and water retention in coconut lands for which Rs. 1,000 million was allocated in the 2015 budget.
To further support small holders, the prevailing high taxes on edible oil, coconut oil and palm oil imports will be maintained in the "long-term interest of coconut plantation," President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is also finance minister, told parliament when presenting the budget on October 24.