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Over 90 percent of fertilizer credits paid – Minister

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In five years till 2021, due to the purchase of fertilizers on credit, the Agriculture Ministry of was supposed to pay arrears of Rs.23,000 million to the private sector.

But despite the economic problems under the present Government, due to the intervention of the President as the Finance Minister, 95 percent of the credit amount due to the purchase of chemical fertilizers to the private sector was able to be paid by the end of 2023, said Agriculture and Plantation Industries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera.

Accordingly, by last year, the Government provided the necessary financial allocation to pay an amount of Rs.18,000 million. The businessmen were able to provide chemical fertilizers to the local market without any deficit in the last season due to the financial strengthening of the private sector due to the repayment of the credits.

Currently, only Rs.5,000 million is payable as arrears. The Minister also mentioned that steps will be taken to pay the amount as soon as the legal issue related to the payment of the amount is over.

Meanwhile, with the Government’s decision to provide funds to the farmers’ accounts to purchase fertilizers, the Government was also able to save a huge amount of money spent on fertilizer distribution.

In the 2022 Yala Season, the Government had to spend nearly Rs.6 billion in transport charges for the distribution of fertilizer countrywide, and then in the 2022 high season also, the Government had to spend an amount of Rs.7 billion.

But in the 2023 Yala Season, vouchers were issued to farmers to buy fertilizers and in the main season, the money was credited to the farmers’ accounts. The Minister said that due to this, the Government was able to manage a huge amount of money that had to be spent on distributing fertilizers.

The Minister participated in observing a farm in Hungama Bataatha area on Monday (12) where successful cultivation of vegetables was done, where the Minister disclosed these facts while meeting the farmers.

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