Government will develop carpentry industry while protecting forest cover – PM

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday assured that the government will provide assistance to mordernise and develop the carpentry industry.

Addressing a group of carpenters from Moratuwa, the Prime Minister said that the government is committed to develop this industry while protecting and promoting the forest cover of the country. “The entire forest cover of the country is only 28 per cent and we are dedicated to increase it,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that President Maithripala Sirisena recently spoke about on how forests can be protected. “He talked only on the banning of mobile saw mills and the use of chainsaws,” he said.The Prime Minister stressed that the country’s forest cover may drop further, if the usage of chainsaws continue to increase.“We started modernizing the carpentry industry in 2003. But unfortunately, we could not continue this programme”, he said.

Prime Minister Wickremesinghe said that new technology can easily be utilized for the modernization of this industry in Moratuwa,which is well known for wood working. “We can obtain the assistance from Moratuwa University and AIT Institute to mordernize the traditional carpentry industry. “We will not face any obstacle in the implementation of this programme as State Finance Minister Eran Wickramaratne is also from the Moratuwa electorate. We held discussions with the Ministry Secretary over the circulars issued by the Ministry”, he said He said this industry should be turned into a mega industry and our traditional expertise should be open to other countries too.

The Prime Minister instructed State Minister Wickremaratne to form a committee headed by Wickremaratne formulate a report on the development of this industry. He said that loan facilities granted under the Enterprise Sri Lanka programme will also be made available for carpenters to develop and modernize this industry. Provincial Councillors Senaka Damayantha was also present.

(Government News Portal)