The Government has decided to purchase paddy from farmers, Cabinet spokesman Bandula Gunawardena said today.
He said that paddy will be purchased at Rs. 50 per kilo for high quality paddy and Rs. 45 for wet paddy.
The Minister made the announcement today at the post cabinet press conference.
Harvesting paddy of Maha season 2019 / 20 has commenced and a harvest of 03 million metric tons of paddy harvest is expected.
Accordingly, the cabinet decided that the Government will mediate in purchasing surplus of paddy stocks in the Maha season of 2019 / 2020 with the objective of encouraging private sector paddy millers to purchase paddy under a fair price to ensure sustaining a fixed price of paddy.
Therefore it was further decided to implement the following decisions without delay.
• Imposing a minimum certified price of Rs. 50/- for a kilo of paddy with the due standard (subject to the criterion of moisture.)
• Minimum certified price of a kilo of paddy with moisture to be certified as Rs. 45/-
• Implement the government programme to purchase rice through district secretaries / government agents as well as the Paddy Marketing Board (PMB)
• Direct purchase of qunatities of rice required for government institutions such as Tri forces, Department of Prisons, Hospitals etc; from Paddy Marketing Board (PMB) itself.
• Immediately entrusting all the store houses / warehouses under the purview of the Food Commission for storing the paddy stocks purchased for storing paddy stocks that is purchased.
• Utilizing lorries and trucks belong to the government for transportation of paddy stocks
• Issuance of pledge loans through state and private banking establishments approximately amounting to Rs. 100 billion under a concessionary loan interest rate of 8% for those purchasers including small and medium scale as well as large scale millers for the purchase of paddy under the certified price.
• Entrusting the monitoring of the paddy purchasing programme in the pioneering districts of Polonnaruwa, Anuradhapura, Kurunegala, Vauniya, Ampara, Batticaloa, Monaragala and Hambantota to several state ministers.
• Immediate issuance of circulars required to implement the above programme by the Secretary to the President.