Food Security Programme to be unveiled next month – Prime Minister

Ranil Wickremesinghe - Prime Minister of Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. (BLOOMBERG / Buddhika Weerasinghe)

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday (June 03) said a Food Security Programme which is being compiled by the Agriculture Department will be unveiled next month with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) expressing its support for the initiative.

The Prime Minister made these remarks when he met the Country Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation, Vimlendra Sharan and UNDP Deputy Country Representative Malin Herwig.

The Prime Minister held discussions with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and UNDP Country representatives regarding the current food situation in the country.

The Prime Minister explained that in view of the threat of a food shortage, a food security programme was being compiled by the Agriculture Department officials. The programme is due to be unveiled next month, with the UNDP expressing their support for the initiative.

He stated that the biggest issue currently facing the agriculture sector is the fertiliser and fuel shortage. The Prime Minister also elaborated on the urban agriculture initiative that he had established to try and overcome a potential food shortage.

The UNDP explained that they were compiling an innovative farming assistance program which would help the farming community overcome the fertiliser shortage.

The FAO also explained that donors had stepped forward to assist the country in the urban agriculture program, and was hopeful that a successful implementation would see more financial support provided.

The FAO also stated they were drafting a food crisis response plan that can be enacted in Sri Lanka.

The Prime Minister explained that within 5-6 months, the current agriculture shortages could be salvaged if swift action was taken to address the shortages faced by the farmers.