Urea shipment faces more delays

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The urea fertiliser shipment scheduled to arrive in the country on 6 July will be delayed by another two days, Chairman of Colombo Commercial Fertilisers, Methsiri Wijegunawardana, said.

The Chairman, earlier said, stocks of fertiliser would be imported through a new joint venture between India and Oman and samples would be tested by Singapore-based Technical Controls and Inspection Services (TCIS).

He added the company has been selected to test samples of all fertiliser stocks imported this year.

Wijegunawardena further said fertiliser samples stored before shipment and samples loaded on the ship will also be tested by the company.

He said another portion of the fertiliser samples will be sent to the Fertiliser Secretariat for testing.

He said a company named RTF, approved by the Indian Government, will import the fertiliser to Sri Lanka and an agreement has been reached between the company and the Government in this regard. He further said that RTF will also test samples at an internationally recognised laboratory and forward the report.

Meanwhile, Media spokesman to the Kawdulu Irrigation Project G.A. Shelton Perera claimed if the Government cannot transport the fertiliser they are ready provide to transport themselves. Speaking to the media, he asked the Government to inform when the shipment arrives at the port, so, they can get the fertiliser themselves. Further, he stressed that the problem will be solved on the road if the Government tries to avoid them.

Farmers also complain that they have been forced to buy fertiliser at a higher price as they had not yet received the chemical fertiliser promised by the Government.

Furthermore, the National Organiser of the National Farmers’ Association urged the Government to take immediate action to provide fertiliser or warned that there will be a 50 per cent reduction in the yield.

Representatives of farmers’ organisations claimed that they have not yet received compensations promised to make up for the loss of 2021 and 2022 monthly harvests. 

(KK)