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Sunday, 28 September 2014

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No rice shortage - Minister Johnston Fernando

Cooperative and Internal Trade Minister Johnston Fernando said that steps will be taken to import rice if shortage arose. A large stretch of paddy cultivation was destroyed due to drought.

Even though the price of rice increased in the past, steps were taken to distribute rice to consumers at reasonable price through Sathosa.

The Government was keen to protect the economy and to improve the living standards of farmers, the Minister said.

Even though paddy was purchased at high price, the Government distributed paddy to Sathosa at low price, and due to this rice could be sold to consumers at reasonable price, the Minister said.

The Government has spent billions of rupees to purchase paddy from farmers.

Money was received from Banks and the Treasury. In addition, paddy was purchased through the District Secretariats. Rs 210 million interest was paid to banks for loans. during this period paddy was distributed to all rice mills equally, he said.

The Government follows the concept of stipulated price when purchasing paddy. Sometimes before we had storing problems. Now we have stores with the capacity of storing 200,000 metric tons of paddy.

Accordingly we maintain the price of one Kilo Nadu at Rs. 32 and one Kilo Samba is purchased at Rs. 35.

In future if a shortage arose, measures will be taken to import rice, the Minister said.

 

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