Sri Lanka state land to encourage fruit exports

ECONOMYNEXT – The Si Lankan government plans to give fruit and vegetable exporters access to land owned by state plantations in a bid to increase supply which has become a constraint in increasing earnings, a senior official said.

The Export Development Board (EDB) is trying to get unused land owned by the state-run Janatha Estate Development Board for cultivation, its chairperson Indira Malwatte said.

“The EDB has just had a dialog with JEDB and we are trying to use their unutilized and underutilized land,” she told the 35th Annual General Meeting of Lanka Fruits & Vegetable Producers, Processors & Exporters’ Association.

“The Department of Export Agriculture have visited their farms, located land which the JEDB is willing to give on a long lease or partnership basis.”

The EDB will soon advertise calling for expression of interest, Malwatte said.

“Depending on the crop and where the land is available members can apply for it.”

Malwatte said the EDB is also in talks with the Ministry of Plantations, where the Regional Plantation Companies have large extents of unutilized land to see whether they can give some of the land to companies doing commercial cultivation.
(COLOMBO, Sept 28, 2016)

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