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Cabinet approval sought for Rs. 2 Bn to purchase paddy

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This year, the Finance Ministry has implemented a special programme for purchasing paddy during the Maha Season.

Accordingly, the Finance Ministry has taken steps to provide loans of Rs. 25 million and Rs. 50 million to small-and medium-scale rice mill owners on concessional interest basis. The amount allocated for this purpose is Rs.9 billion.

The Agriculture Department has already given a minimum price for paddy. Accordingly, it was decided to implement a joint programme with the Finance Ministry and small-and medium-scale rice mill owners to buy Nadu rice with a moisture content of 14 percent at Rs. 100 per kilogram.

But this time too no steps have been taken to give money to the Paddy Marketing Board to purchase paddy.

But the Agriculture and Plantation Industries Ministry has decided to start a special programme for the purchase of paddy by the Paddy Marketing Board.

Accordingly, Agriculture and Plantation Industries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera presented a Cabinet Paper requesting that out of the Rs. 5 billion to be charged to the Farmer Trust Fund from the Treasury, Rs. 2 billion should be given to the Paddy Marketing Board.

The Paddy Marketing Board says that it is ready to purchase paddy once the Rs. 2 billion is received. The Board also emphasises that all the warehouses of the Paddy Marketing Board have been prepared for that purpose.


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