Nov 08, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lankan banks will be asked to pay one percent of their profits to a national insurance fund to help farmers from next year, the island’s president Mahinda Rajapaksa said. Rajapaksa, who is also finance minister, said farmers who get a fertiliser subsidy will also be asked to contribute to the fund.
Financial sector companies will have to pay one percent of their profits to the National Insurance Fund from next year, he said while presenting the government’s budget for 2013 to parliament Thursday.
Farmers will also be made members of a government insurance scheme and pay 150 rupees to the fund for every 50 kilo of subsidised fertiliser they get.
Rajapaksa said the government will allocate a billion rupees to help farmers hit by sereve drought this year.
He also announced a moratorium on loan repayments for drought-hit farmers till the next main ‘Maha’ rice harvest.
Interest on the loans will be waived he said. One billion rupees will be allocated for the purpose.