Sri Lanka has imported extra food from India for April season: Minister

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has imported extra food from India for the April season and will not face any shortage as a result of the three-week lockdown in place there, co-cabinet spokesman Bandula Gunawardena said.

The country has enough stocks of essential food as well as other items imported from India till the end of April, he said.

Generally every year, said Gunawardena, businesses and the government pile extra stock of essential food and other items in preparation for the Sinhala and Tamil new year in April.

“It won’t be a problem,” he said.

However, the emergency COVID-19 task force under former Minister Basil Rajapaksa will explore methods to cultivate some of the food items which can be grown locally within a short period of time in order to meet the demand, he added.

India imposed a nationwide lockdown yesterday to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. India’s Economic Times reported that India will have enough foodgrain stockpiles to feed its poor for at least a year-and-a-half as the reserves are likely to further balloon after record harvests in the country.

“There will be no food shortage in the second-most populous country,” the website quoted D.V. Prasad, chairman of state-run Food Corporation of India (FCI), as saying. (Colombo/Mar26/2020)