Despite many obstacles the country has archived a tea export revenue of USD 1.2 billion till the end of November, Tea Board Chairman Jayampathy Molligoda told a felicitation ceremony held in recognition of the historic achievement of conducting the Colombo Tea Auction on an online platform for the first time in over 125 years held at Shangri La Hotel Colombo on Friday.
|Tea Board Chairman Jayampathy Molligoda. Picture by Saliya Rupasinghe.|
He expressed optimism that the tea exporters would by the end of the year be able to achieve a target of USD 1,3 billion tea export revenue. In rupee terms, they have already achieved Rs 242 billion. He said this rupee figure was significant because that is what trickles down right up to the farmers. The tea industry must not be viewed only from the export revenue or ads a major foreign exchange earner it’s a way of life for the 500,000 farmers smallholders, 135,000 estate workers, 20 odd regional plantation companies, 590 tea factories and about 280 tea exporters apart from the brokers and other associations supporting this entire global value chain.
He said with the introduction of the e-auction the prices have gone up and with the increase of crop production the price stabilized. Molligoda said in today’s context Rs 242 billion when the economy is not doing well in terms of foreign exchange earnings particularly because of loss tourism the country losing over US$ 9 billion in the last two months.