Plantation Minister Dr. Ramesh Pathirana says the country earned US 450 million dollars from the exportation of minor export crops including cinnamon, pepper and cardamom.
He also said that the plantation sector is expected to earn around US $ 600 million this year.
He was speaking at the opening of the Spice House and the new Information Center by the Department of Export Agriculture in Ukuwela, Matale yesterday (29).
The Minister also introduced a new variety of cardamom named ‘Ranweli Yasas Sri’ and provided subsidies to spice growers in the area.
Further expressing his views the Minister said.
Sri Lanka earned US $ 450 million last year from the export of minor export crops including cinnamon, pepper and cardamom. We can no longer ignore the minor export crop sector. Therefore, the present government led by President Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is making great efforts to further increase this revenue in the future.
Last year we earned US $ 12 billion from all sectors of the pearl, gem, apparel and plantation industries. Thirty percent of that export income is earned by the plantation industry. If there is a positive trend, the plantation sector is expected to earn over US $ 600 million this year.
For the first time in our
history, our country received a Certificate of Registration from the European
Union for Cinnamon. It's something we have been hoping for a long time.
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Also, a proposal has been submitted to the Cabinet to establish a Plantation Management and Research University. Farmers in our country have no experience in foreign markets. Establishing such universities will enable future generations to share their knowledge of the plantation field.
In addition to the main crops, there is a good demand for Kithul in the world. But we did not know about it. For the first time in history the present government took steps to gazette the Kithul tree as a plantation crop. Also, Kithul has been awarded the Sri Lanka Quality Certificate. Steps will be taken to regulate kithul products in the future. The Minister further stated that the country will be able to earn a large export income in the future by exporting kithul products.
Central Province Governor Lalith U. Gamage, Minister of State for Minor Export Crop Promotion Janaka Wakkumbura, Secretary to the Ministry of Plantation Ravindra Hewawitharana, Secretary to the Ministry of State S.D. Padikorala, Matale District Parliament Member Rohana Dissanayake, Director of the Department of Export Agriculture and others were also present. .