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Sri Lanka to increase local cashew production through public-private partnerships

Sri Lanka to increase local cashew production through public-private partnerships

The Morning: Amidst the Cabinet’s approval to import 15,000 tons of cashew nuts, Sri Lanka Cashew Corporation (SLCC) anticipates cultivating cashew, based on a private and a public partnership of land, The Daily Morning Business learns.
Speaking to The Daily Morning Business, Sri Lanka Cashew Corporation (SLCC) Chairman Saranga Ratnayaka said: “We are planning to engage with the private sector to cultivate cashews in government lands. Moreover, the private sector has already requested land.”
Therefore, SLCC will start calling local investors or the private sector within another two – three months’ time period. He stated that with the private-public partnership the SLCC is planning to increase their plantation by 10-15% in 2024.
Currently, their plantation is restricted to Ondaatjie land and plans to expand the plantation by 250 acres this year.
Moreover, SLCC will start cashew plantation in areas such as Wanathavilluwa that has 40 acres along with few other lands that are owned by the Cashew Corporation.
According to SLCC, in the coming years, and based on the cashew harvest they will plan to export cashews.
However, some export companies of Sri Lanka already export value added cashew from their own private harvest or buying from the SLCC, he said
Ratnayaka pointed out that the main reason for low harvest is the bad weather condition. Cashew is grown in the dry zone therefore last year’s continuous rainfall had a bad impact on the harvest with falling down of cashew flowers buds.
Sri Lanka consumes 25,000 tons of Cashew per year which is primarily the hotel sector. However, this year the cashew harvest has been between seven thousand to ten thousand which is insufficient.
However, The Cabinet has approved the import of 15,000 tons of cashew nuts to address a shortage and support local industry where the lower harvest has left a significant gap between demand and supply.

OSL take:

Sri Lanka’s agriculture industry, which is on a growth path along with the overall economic activities in the country, is presenting a host of new business/investment opportunities. The growing demand for food in the local market as well as the expansion in the exports sector have resulted in the steady growth in the cultivation of food and export crops. It is in such a backdrop that cashew cultivation has presented a business/investment opportunity for foreign businesses/investors looking at thr agriculture industry. Given the demand for cashew locally and internationally, investing in the cashew cultivation offers a lucrative business opportunity. With the government of Sri Lanka offering PPP opportunities along with incentives, foreign businesses/investors could explore the expanding opportunities in the cashew cultivation sector. The many trade agreements enjoyed by Sri Lanka also offers lucrative opportunities for food crop exports.

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Article Code : VBS/AT/20240305/Z_2

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