An agreement to boost milk production involving Sri Lanka’s Cargills and India’s Amul dairy groups was inked during a visit of Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met President Ranil Wickremesinghe in Colombo, a statement said.
The parties to the project were Indian National Dairy Development Board, the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation of India (Amul), and the Cargills Group of Sri Lanka.
“The primary objective of this new project is to increase milk production by 53 percent within the first five years and achieve self-sufficiency in milk production for Sri Lanka within 15 years,” a statement from the President’s media office said.
“As part of this endeavour, it is anticipated that approximately 200,000 local farmers will be empowered through the provision of facilities such as high-quality medicines, animal nutrition and technical support.
“Furthermore, this initiative encompasses digitalization of the livestock sector, investments in new technologies to enhance the quality of milk-related by-products and ensuring access to milk-related products at affordable prices.”
A third phase of an Indian supported housing project was also inaugurated, with an initial allocation of 1,026 million rupees. The cost per house was increased to 2.8 million rupees after a currency collapse.
India was also funding the development of 27 schools in the Northern Province, housing in Mannar and Anuradhapura, construction of a trilingual school in Polonnaruwa, the establishment of 2889 rainwater harvesting projects in the Jaffna area.
A refrigerated warehouse with a capacity of 5,000 metric tonnes for fruit improvements to the Hatton Thondaman Vocational Training Centre and Pussellawa Saraswati Central College, would also be funded by India.