Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council to plant 40,000 palm saplings | Daily News

Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council to plant 40,000 palm saplings

The Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council has taken steps to plant 40,000 palm saplings on the sides of the province roads in line with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s Sustainable Urban Development Policy, Sabaragamuwa Provincial Governor Tikiri Kobbekaduwa said.

He was speaking at a discussion held on the progress of this palm planting project implemented by the Sabaragamuwa Provincial Ministry of Industries.

The inauguration ceremony to plant Kithul will be held on November 27, near the Kegalle town. The Governor further said that the project will be implemented jointly by the Sabaragamuwa Provincial Ministry of Industries, the Department of Local Government, the Local Government Institutions, and the Road Development Authority. Accordingly, the Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council, Ratnapura Municipal Council, as well as the Kegalle, Balangoda, Embilipitiya Urban Councils and all the Pradeshiya Sabhas and Divisional Secretariats in the Ratnapura and Kegalle districts, have joined the programme. He also said that he would work with the government to remove the existing rules and regulations related to palm products. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has set up a ministry associated with the palm industry to promote local products for the first time in the country’s history, he said.

The Governor added that the economy of rural palm artisans could be boosted by producing juggery, honey, ‘telijja’, flour and wood products to local and foreign markets.

The Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council has drafted a charter and bills for the Palm Development Authority and the National Palm Development and Research Authority under the Sabaragamuwa Palm Development Programme. Palm plants are found in 18 districts of Sri Lanka and contributes about Rs.50,000 million to the national economy, annually, the Sabaragamuwa Provincial Planning Division stated. According to the data of the sector, the export of palm products earns an annual foreign exchange of Rs.120 million.

The Sabaragamuwa Provincial Planning Division stated that there are about 30,000 palm tappers in the country.