Plantation sector performs well
Plantation sector performed well during the first nine months of this
year in which tea, rubber and coconut sub sectors have achieved a
significant growth, said the Minister of Plantation D.M. Jayarathne.
Tea production has increased to 280 million Kg and annual production
will exceed to 290 million Kg. During this period 213 million Kg exports
earned Rs. 97 billion revenue. Average FOB price of tea recorded Rs. 454
Kg and it was Rs. 435 in 2008. This is a 19% price increase, the
The Minister said that 5,600 tonns of tea have been imported during
the period for blending and Rs. 3.5 billion earned by re-exporting them.
For the sustainable growth in the sector government has issued new
orders to plantation companies. Accordingly the companies should start
replanting, at least 2% for every year, maintain forest cover in the
area and provide welfare to the workers.
Also government has directed the plantation companies to start
reforestation in barren land. Tea small holders contribute 72% towards
the total tea production and the government gives all assistance to
provide fertiliser subsidy. Sri Lanka also export tea to 50 countries
the Minister said. During this year trade exhibitions were held in five
countries, he said.
The highest rubber production is reported in this year and during the
first nine months 102,000 tonns were produced. Value of the rubber
export is 7.5 billion. Areas for rubber cultivation have been identified
and government has planned to cultivate 1000 hectares of rubber in the
Monaragala district. Rubber cultivation will also be started in the
Anuradhapura district and the Eastern province next year.
Coconut sector too performed well during the year and estimated yield
is 2,859 million nuts. As the government imposed 28% tax on palm oil
imports the production of coconut oil increased.
The Government has also launched a coconut replantation program and
during this year 8,156 acres of land were replanted.
Another 1,682 acres of coconut lands were rehabilitated and
replantation has been extended to North and East provinces, the minister