Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Agriculture said distribution of urea supplied by the government of India will commence on Tuesday July 12.
Ministry spokesman Dharma Wanninayake said the consignment reached Sri Lanka on July 09, was unloaded on July 10 and a quality inspection was conducted on Monday July 11.
During inspection, the urea held a biuret level of 0.9 which is suitable for cultivation and of appropriate quality, said Wanninayake. A trade certificate has also been issued after inspection, he said.
The 40,000 MT of urea came from Oman under the Indian credit line. Another 25,000 MT is expected to reach the country in the near future and will be distributed to farmers, the official said.
Cabinet approval has been given to sell the consignment of urea to rice cultivators island-wide for 10,000 rupees per 50 kilograms.
Former Agriculture and Wildlife Minister Mahinda Amaraweera had claimed Sri Lanka could reach self-sufficiency in rice by the next Maha season and prevent imports from India and Myanmar.
Amaraweera said rice production had fallen by up to 40 percent in the last Maha cultivation season that ended in February this year. Sri Lanka’s rice production has dropped sharply since President Gotabaya Rajapaksa banned chemical fertilizers in April last year.