The government will be entering an agreement with paddy mill owners thereby curbing the price of rice by around Rs. 75 - 50, said Agriculture Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage, speaking to media yesterday (26).
"We will enter an agreement with the paddy mill owners next week, to decide on the selling of one kilo of Nadu, one kilo of Samba and of KeeriSamba. Now we have decided on the price of paddy. Theu will come to an agreement with us next week on the price of rise. Therefore, you should keep in mind that we are protecting the one million farmers in our country, as it is the responsiblity of the Trade Minister - to protect the 20 million rice concumers in the country. We will not allow any injustice to the paddy farmer" Aluthgamage said.
He added: "If someone does not purchase paddy as a government, the government would be ready to purchase all this paddy for fifty, fifty two or fifty five. Therefore, for the first time in the history of Sri Lankan politics, an agreement is made between the paddy mill owners and the government. The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna, under a five-year United National Party governmebnt - had not spoken a word on behalf of the farmers. As such, I, as the Agriculture Minister, tell all farmers that we, as the government, are ready to take care of any economic disadvantage occurred by the purchase of paddy for Rs. 50. Today, a kilo of Nadu is Rs. 120, Samba, Rs. 150, KeeriSamba, Rs. 225. We will curb the price of all this by from Rs. 75 to Rs. 50 next week."