PMB purchases 7000 MTs of Maha harvest
The Paddy Marketing Board (PMB) has already purchased 7000 metric
tonnes of paddy from farmers countrywide for this Maha season, said
Co-operatives and Internal Trade Minister Johnston Fernando.
Minister Fernando told the Daily News the paddy purchasing programme
will be further expanded and that the PMB currently possesses facilities
to stock paddy at its islandwide granaries.
The paddy purchasing programme was launched in the Ampara District.
The PMB has now commenced purchases from the Anuradhapura, Vavuniya,
Mannar, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi ,Trincomalee, Batticaloa,
Polonnaruwa, Matale, Hambantota and Moneragala Districts.
The Government has already allocated Rs.1.2 billion to purchase
2009-2010 Maha paddy harvest. However, the President has given
guidelines to the Treasury to release more funds if required for paddy
purchases of the Maha paddy harvest. At present, a kilo of Samba paddy
is purchased at a certified price of Rs.30 while a kilo of Nadu paddy is
purchased at Rs.28. He said the PMB has adequate paddy storage
facilities for this purpose.
All paddy countrywide PMB purchasing centers are now open for
purchasing. The minister further said that PMB would purchase any
quantity of paddy which meets the basic standards. All paddy stocks
confirming to the required standards brought by farmers have been
purchased and no farmers had been turned away.
He mentioned that the PMB is purchasing only quality paddy and
requested farmers to dry their yield for at least a day so that the
moisture is reduced to around 14 percent.
It is the present government under the leadership of President
Mahinda Rajapaksa which took measures to grant a certified price for
paddy farmers the minister said.