ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will import 38,500 metric tonnes of potassium fertilizer for the upcoming paddy cultivation season and distribute to farmers under a subsidy program, a government statement said.
About 600,000 hectares of paddy is expected to be cultivated in the upcoming Yala cultivation season.
The cabinet of ministers had approved a proposal by Agriculture Minister Mahindanda Aluthgamage to import 38,500 tonnes of muriate of potash (potassium chloride).
International competitive bids will be called for the fertilizer.
The fertilizer will be distributed under a subsidy program.
Sri Lanka suddenly banned chemical fertilizer last year creating a crisis in agriculture sector. The ban was relaxed and the government said no subsidy will be given for chemicals, and only organic fertilizer will be promoted in that way.
Sri Lanka’s fertilizer subsidy program has led to overuse and the country by passing the use of advanced fertilizer (slow release pellets with micro-nutrients) critics have said. (Colombo/Mar01/2022)